Wednesday, June 29, 2011
Monday, June 27, 2011
Sunday, June 26, 2011
|Leathery-veiled Bolete - Paragyrodon sphaerosporus|
I knew I had found something unique, the thick veil covering the underside of the cap was unusual, and every part of it stained reddish brown when cut. I figured it would be easy to identify. But I was wrong. I consulted three field guides and didn't find anything that matched this mushroom. I finally identified it after a lucky search on the Mushroom Expert website. Not only is it unique in its appearance, but it is mostly rare outside of the Great Lakes region, the only mushroom to be so that I know of (but there's still a lot for me know about mushrooms).
In the next picture you'll see a reddish brown section of the cap that I cut away this moring, and right next to it, a section I cut away just before the picture was taken this evening.
If you'd like more information, please go to the excellent Mushroom Expert webiste, or to Tom Volk's also excellent website (the common name I used in the titled is taken from his site)
Thursday, June 23, 2011
I thought the mushrooms in the next two pictures would be fairly easy to identify. Orange caps, yellow gills, dark brown stalks, white spore print and growth on wood. But I couldn't quite find a match. Except for Flammulina velutipes, the Velvet Foot or Winter Mushroom. On paper it's a decent match, but they just don't look right for F. velutipes, and it's the wrong time of the year.
Monday, June 20, 2011
|Common Ringlet - Coenonympha tullia|
Sunday, June 19, 2011
|Virginian Tiger Moth - Spilosoma virginica|
Thursday, June 16, 2011
These red bumps on this Silver Maple Leaf are Maple Bladder Galls, caused by the minute mite Vasates quadripedes. I won't go into much detail about galls or the mite that creates these galls in this post. If you want more information, go to this site from Penn State University or this site from Washington State University. I looked at a number of these galls under my dissecting scope to see the Eriophyoid mites that cause them. Below is what I found.
The picture above is a cross section of one of the galls. They are hollow on the inside, with the inner surface being lobed or bumpy.
This is a view of the gall with the top cut off. Inside of almost all of the galls were many tiny eggs or immature mites (I'm not really sure which) that didn't move and resembled miniature, yellowish, translucent grains of rice. Also, in most galls there were larger, miniature, translucent grains of rice that did move and had legs or other appendages. Some of the galls had very active mites that sort of got away from the rice resemblance, but they were still very minute and just as translucent
I read that the mites enter the leaf through the underside, and that a small hole can be seen under the gall where the mite entered the leaf and began feeding. I looked and the holes were not only visible under the scope, but were visible to the unaided eye. But what really caught my eye under the scope was the venation of the leaf. I was really surprised at how beautiful the colors and patterns of the leaf veins were with the magnification of the dissecting scope.