Sunday, 10 October 2010
The Fruits of Autumn?
This year, here is North Yorkshire, the fruits have Atumn have been plentiful. There are heavy crops of hawthorn berries awaiting the arrival of the fieldfares and redwings; the elderberries are looking particularly luscious; conkers lie thick on the ground under the horse chestnut trees (don't children play 'conkers' any more?); rose hips are already very bright red and stand out like sentinels in the hedgerow.
And fungi! They are everywhere. Yesterday there was a huge patch on our side lawn. I had thought to photograph them this morning but on going out all that remains is a patch of brown/black goo.
But a couple of days ago some friends and I walked round our bottom meadows and in one corner, near to where the beck flows through, some of the grass blades were covered with a brightish yellow spongy froth. Needless to say I had forgotten to carry my camera (always carry a camera - you never know what you might come across).
Yesterday the farmer and I walked over to the spot to photograph it - the yellowness had gone and the spongy quality had hardened - but the fungus (for that is what I assume it is) was still there. Nearby were some almost transparent little 'mushrooms' so I photographed one of those as well.
I have asked Stuart Dunlop (Donegal Wildlife on my side bar) if he know what it is. In the meantime if any of you readers out there know what it is, please let us know in the comment box. The farmer can't remember ever seeing it on the grass before.
Have a nice Sunday.
2.20pm. As I predicted, Stuart Dunlop of Donegal Wildlife has correctly identified the 'fungus'. I am not sure you will want to know that it is commonly called 'Dog Vomit Slime Mould'! Ha! says the farmer - there is a heap of it at the back of the garage and there was me thinking the dog had been sick. (Sorry about that). Its proper name is myxomycetes and it was thought to be fungus but recent research has suggested that it moves around in a manner similar to amoeba (remember doing amoeba in biology at school?) It reacts strongly to light. Thank you for the help Stuart.
We learn something new every day in blogland.