Sunday, May 26, 2013

Yellow Morels of MN

Please see my previous post Black Morels of MN for some background information to this post
Names for yellow morels in field guides have include, M. esculenta, M. crassipes, M. deliciosa.  All three names are the names of European morels that have been applied to North American morels.  Recent work has shown them to be separate species.  The most common species in the eastern US and MN is probably M. esculentoides.  Other species of "yellow" morels  that could possibly be found in MN are M. cryptica and M. prava.  All three species are related and are part of the Esculenta clade

I think most of the morels I have found in MN are "yellow" morels.  I don't think I have ever found any "black" morels, though I haven't always payed close attention in the past.  I have found smaller, grayer morels that I have assumed to be a separate species, but they are probably actually immature M. esculentoides.

I looked at the records from the Morel Data Collection Project to see what species have been recorded in MN.  There weren't many records from MN, and the only species identified was M. esculenta.  I wonder if it is the only species actually found in MN; the other species I listed were just based on the written range descriptions.  I suppose more appropriate titles for these two posts would be "Possible Morels of MN.