Myco-Consortium talk May 3: Kurt Miller

As part of the MST's membership in the Myco-Consortium series of Zoom talks, MST members are invited to join the presentation on Tuesday, May 3rd at 7pm ET:

Diversity of Tropical Fungi in Puerto Rico

A talk by Kurt Miller
Tuesday May 3rd, 7pm ET

Puerto Rico is an island in the Caribbean with a unique culture, history, and biological diversity. Citizen scientist Kurt Miller has lived here for several years in which he has documented hundreds of species of tropical macrofungi. He will be discussing the taxonomy and species diversity of these beautiful mushrooms together with high quality photos from different habitats all over the island.


About Kurt Miller

Kurt Miller is a community scientist from Kirkland, Washington. He lives in Puerto Rico where he has interned with Forest Service mycologist Dr. Jean Lodge and served as a field biologist during the 11th annual International Mycology Congress in San Juan, Puerto Rico. His main interests are tropical fungal ecology and taxonomy, environmental education, and documenting rare mushroom species, especially those which form mycorrhizae with sea grape (Coccoloba spp), a native tree. He administers the local group ‘Fungi of Puerto Rico’ and leads several fungal identification walks annually on the island. He is a FunDiS Biodiversity Database Identifier specializing in fungi of the Caribbean Islands.

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Myco-Consortium talk Apr. 29: João Araújo

As part of the MST's membership in the Myco-Consortium series of Zoom talks, MST members are invited to join the presentation on Friday, April 29th at 7pm ET:

The Biology Behind the Zombie-Ant Fungi

A talk by João Araújo
Friday April 29th, 7pm ET

The ability to infect insects arose multiple times along the evolution of Fungi. However, none has shown such broad and sophisticated strategies to infect, persist and transmit spores than the so-called “Zombie-Ant Fungi”. These fungi evolved the ability to make their hosts leave the colony, climb up to a summit position on plant parts and bite onto the substrate. The infected ant remains attached by locking its mandibles into the plant tissue, which is often further reinforced by fungal structures. A few days after the host’s death, the fungus erupts from their bodies to grow structures that will shower spores on the forest floor, eventually infecting new workers that forage on the ground. They have also developed a broad range of morphologies, adapted likely in response to the host ecology and morphology. In this talk, João will present how these behavior manipulators arose and which strategies they have developed in order to thrive and spread through several species, becoming a diverse fungal group.


About João Araújo

João Araújo is a mycologist specializing in systematics and evolutionary ecology of insect-associated fungi, particularly entomopathogenic fungi and their mycoparasites in the Neotropics and Amazonia. João’s research interest is related to insect-associated fungi. He is interested in taxonomy, systematics and evolutionary ecology. Currently, he is working on the diversity and evolution of Japanese, Amazonian and African entomopathogenic fungi. His typical approach is to combine fundamental taxonomic science with natural history, field work, evolutionary biology, microscopy and photography. João is also interested in Scientific Illustration and Science communication through the arts. He is Assistant Curator of Mycology, Institute of Systematic Botany at the New York Botanical Garden.

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Myco-Consortium talk Apr. 22: Michael Warnock

As part of the MST's membership in the Myco-Consortium series of Zoom talks, MST members are invited to join the presentation on Friday, April 22nd at 7pm ET:

Indoor Fungi

A talk by Michael Warnock
Friday April 22nd, 7pm ET

Uncontrolled water intrusions in our homes and work spaces can result in unplanned indoor fungal growth. While most of us have encountered mold or mildew in our bathrooms, kitchens, attics and basements, there are a whole suite of fungi (and slime molds) that grow in our indoor environments. In this presentation, Michael Warnock will lead us through a wide range of fungal organisms that may impact our built environment, with sometimes tragic or lethal outcomes.


About Michael Warnock

Michael Warnock studied mycology with Professor David Malloch at the University of Toronto. After graduating in 2000, Michael worked briefly in the University of Toronto mycology laboratory before joining a pioneering private mycology laboratory, Sporometrics Inc., where he worked until 2007. Seeking to better intersect his desire to study fungi that grow in buildings with his drive to be in the field, he started a new company ID Onsite Inc. in 2003. Since then, he has worked in a wide range of water-damaged buildings. Ever fond of time in the woods, Michael has been an active member of the Mycological Society of Toronto, serving in various capacities including two terms as President. He was a contributing author for The Mushrooms of Toronto which was published in 2015, and has given public talks on a wide range of mycology interests (slime molds, indoor fungi, ascomycetes, and mushrooms in video games). He currently resides in Woodbridge, Ontario with his wife and three children.

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Myco-Consortium talk Apr. 15: Greg Marley

As part of the MST's membership in the Myco-Consortium series of Zoom talks, MST members are invited to join the presentation on Friday, April 15th at 7pm ET:

Mushroom poisonings

A talk by Greg Marley
Friday April 15th, 7pm ET

There is a surging interest in wild mushrooms and foraging for edibles. The Northeast’s abundant mushrooms offer a supply of locally sourced, tasty food. Many people are taking to the woods in search of edible mushrooms to eat and share with their families. Unfortunately, The Northern New England Poison Center has seen a corresponding increase in calls involving poisonous mushrooms concerning people experiencing a range of unpleasant and sometimes serious symptoms. Anyone collecting mushrooms for food must learn the toxic species with the same enthusiasm as the edible ones. This presentation will explore the Northeast’s poisonous mushrooms and the common edible ones that may resemble them, concentrating on recent upturns in poisoning cases.

About Greg Marley

Greg Marley has been collecting, studying, eating, growing and teaching mushrooms for almost 50 years. He spreads his love of mushrooms to hundreds through walks, talks and classes across the New England. Marley is the author of Mushrooms for Health; Medicinal Secrets of Northeastern Fungi, (Downeast Books, 2009) and the award-winning Chanterelle Dreams, Amanita Nightmares; The Love, Lore and Mystique of Mushrooms, (Chelsea Green, 2010). As a volunteer mushroom identification consultant to Poison Centers across New England he provides expertise in mushroom poisoning cases. When not mushrooming, Marley works as a mental health clinician and consultant specializing in suicide prevention.

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