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Specimens, Specimens, and More Specimens!

The annual Cain Foray is #Worth-It for the Sort, but it is important to pay close attention to the specimens you collect on the forays. In general, the Mycological Society advises against over-picking fungi which may mean curbing your enthusiasm somewhat and not duplicating specimens (see mushroomer’s code).

At the Cain Foray typically 270+ species of fungi are collected. What’s interesting is that different weather conditions affect what is collected in abundance.

For example:

  • In 2011, it was a great year for parasitism. We were instructed to look for specimens with powdery coatings, or gills that had been aborted by overgrowth of a second fungi species.
  • In 2015, the sorting tables were nearly devoid of Trcholoma, Entoloma and Cortinarius and many of the boletes that were brought back were unidentifiable due to Hypomyces Chrysopermus, a cottony soft ascomycete parasite.
  • Unusually high numbers of bolete species were reported in 2004.
  • Slime molds were big in 2006.
  • Only two specimens of Leotia Stiptiata were found in 1979, at the Dorset location.

What will be in abundance this year? We look forward to finding out at this year’s Cain. See you there!

Cain Foray sorting tables

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