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West Coast Chanterelles (Was Re: Taxonomy and opinions)

truffler1635 at my-deja.com truffler1635 at my-deja.com
Mon Sep 11 01:32:03 EST 2000

In article <Pine.GSO.3.95.1000910142533.18869C-
100000 at hollywood.cinenet.net>,
  Nathan Wilson <velosa at cinenet.net> wrote:
> On Sun, 10 Sep 2000 truffler1635 at my-deja.com wrote:
> > Cantharellus aurora-borealis is a more coastal variety/species.
> I've heard about this, but as you point out it seems to be associated with
> Sitka spruce.  Do you know who authored this species?  I'm also curious
> if it's C. aurora-borealis or C. arora-borealis since David's last name
> is Arora.
An excellent question! I heard it in oral instead of printed information
at an Oregon Mycological Society meeting, so I can't say positively. But
arora-borealis does sound more logical. ;)
> > A third variety (which I am criticized constantly for) has the unusual
> > feature of a hollow pileus. I have found several sites for this fungus,
> > usually mixed with C. formosus. With the exception of being slightly more
> > brilliant yellow than other varieties, and possibly with slightly thinner
> > cap flesh, it tastes pretty much the same as any other chanterelle. Found
> > with 30-60 year old D fir and Western hemlock in the Coast Range and
> > Cascades, from 600-2500 feet elevation (so far).
> Does sound likely to be an environmentally induced form, but sounds really
> interesting.  I don't remember ever seeing a hollow pileus.  Perhaps a
> hollow stipe.

Mea culpa. You are right, of course, I should have said a hollow stipe.
The hollow area extends from near ground level to nearly the pileus (or
> > C. subalbidus in my limited experience is robust, pallid or pale buff-
> > white to off-white, often several ounces per specimen, with a much
> > thicker pileus. I seldom (once) encounter it under 2,000 feet elevation,
> > but have found nearly pure stands of it at 2500-4000 feet elevation under
> > mixed stands of old-growth trees including: D fir, W hemlock, Noble fir,
> > and Pacific yew. While C. formosus can be present also in the stands, C.
> > subalbidus seems to be the predominant species _unless_ one gets near
> > canopy openings and abundant seedling Western hemlock. Sometimes the
> > dense stands of seedling Western hemlock cover up the fruiting C.
> > formosus in these sites. If I did not also find C. formosus growing up to
> > 100 feet away from these seedling trees, I would call them associated
> > only with very young trees.
> That's really interesting.  The pale one I find most often is the
> madrone/fir one and is found near the coast.  It's probably the same
> organism as the collection described as C. cibarius var. pallidifolius
> in Agaricales of California.  As noted in that work is does seem to
> intergrade with oranger Cantharellus found in the same habitat.
Unfortunately, Eric Danell's research *proved* that C. cibarius is a
strictly European species, meaning the name C. formosus becomes the next
best alternative. I think this originated in Singer, but I'm not
positive. Any suggestions out there?
> > Finally, in the Mulino-Molalla area of the Cascade foothills I encounter
> > a Chanterelle variety largely unlike any other I frequently collect. It
> > seldom fruits until _very_ late in the season, and gets rather massive,
> > although the largest water-logged specimen I've seen was still less than
> > a pound in size. It differs from C. formosus in that I collected it on
> > Feb. 28 one year
> Now for California, particularly Southern California that isn't
> particularly late.  I know people who have collected the live oak
> variety as early as September (in Santa Cruz) and as late as May (near
> LA).
> > Is suppose I should list also the C. tubaeiformis, a non-descript
> > "Yellow-foot Chanterelle" found often at snow-line, typically fruiting or
> > arising from buried Noble fir logs or other debris.
> At the *snow-line*, wow!  I've only ever seen this in damp forests within
> a few miles of the coast.  I'm also not quite sure what to call this one.
> Various books list C. tubaeformis (Agaricales of California, Fungi of
> Switzerland) while others use C. infundibuliformis (Mushrooms of
> Northeastern North America, Fungi of Japan, Arora), but I haven't seen any
> that list and distinguish between both. It's interesting to me that this
> is a distinction that Fries made, but which most current mycologists seem
> to reject.  The other thing that's odd is that apparently Smith didn't
> think is was good to eat.  The one I've collected in Northern California
> is excellent in fact I like it better than it's bigger cousins.
It _is_ good eating. But it is harder to clean than matsutake growing in
> The really interesting question to me is how to make this information we
> have available to others.  I'd like to extend my species listing program
> to include info like this, but I really need to create a web interface for
> it first.
Exactly, Nathan. But perhaps by posting the information in a forum such
as this, additional areas of the country may benefit down the line.
Mycology (and especially taxonomy) tend to be a cumulative effort, after
all. ;)

Daniel B. Wheeler

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