A Hairy Fungus

Above: Phycomyces, or pin mold, sporangiophores (stalks) and sporangia (round spore cases). A hairy mass of mold or fungus caught the attention of Museum Volunteer Sam as she was filling bird feeders. Superficially, it looked like fur. A closer look hinted at some sort of mold or fungus. At first I/we thought the stringy, filamentous fungus was growing up from the thistle or niger seed that was spilled along the ground near the bird feeders in Catch the Wind. ARead more

Winter Continues

We’ve had both warm and cold weather so far this season, mostly warm. Regardless of the temperature, things are rolling along as always; sunny days bring out turtles to bask, ducks feed, court, and rest in our wetland, and Mahonia blooms as it always does this time of year on the Dinosaur Trail and elsewhere around the campus. There seems to have been an unusual amount of fungi this fall and winter, perhaps due to the significant rain we’ve experienced.Read more

The British are coming (they’re here)!

Last week while I was trying to remove ice and snow from the boardwalk in Explore the Wild I uncovered a familiar but still surprising sight. It was lichen growing between the cracks of the boardwalk, British Soldier lichen (Cladonia cristatella). These attractive lichen can be found just about anywhere that there is moisture and decaying wood. The red caps on the end of the thallus help the lichen stand out from others of its kind which results in makingRead more