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Agrocybe erebia

[ Basidiomycetes > Agaricales > Bolbitiaceae > Agrocybe . . . ]

by Michael Kuo

This is the only Agrocybe species that has a ring and a consistently dark brown cap. A few other species, like those in the Agrocybe praecox cluster, can be fairly dark brown when young, but soon fade to much paler shades. Agrocybe erebia is dark brown from start to finish. It also has a lined cap margin, gills that begin to run down the stem, and a slimy surface (when fresh); these are pretty distinctive features among ringed Agrocybe species.

In fact the biggest hindrance to identification is likely to be hesitation to consider Agrocybe in the first place, since the species is so "unagrocybish" (snout-nosed spores and a woodland, terrestrial habitat can be added to its list of rebel features). But its stature and brown spore print make Agaricus just about the only other reasonable choice, and it is even less "agaricusish" than "agrocybish."


Ecology: Saprobic; growing alone or gregariously on the ground in woods under hardwoods or conifers; summer and fall; widely distributed in northern North America, according to the literature, but extending at least as far south as central Illinois.

Cap: 2-5 cm; convex becoming broadly convex to flat, often with a low central bump; dark brown and remaining fairly dark--eventually dull brown; slimy when fresh and young, but soon drying out; smooth; often with whitish partial veil remnants on the margin.

Gills: Attached to the stem or, more typically, beginning to run down the stem; pale brownish, eventually rusty brown; close or nearly distant.

Stem: 3-7 cm long; up to 1 cm thick; more or less equal; smooth to finely hairy; whitish, becoming brownish from the base up; with a pale ring that is thin and may collapse or disappear by maturity.

Flesh: Pale or brownish; thin.

Odor and Taste: Not distinctive.

Spore Print: Brown.

Microscopic Features: Spores 11-15.5 x 5-6.5 µ; elliptical, but with a "snout-like" end; smooth.

REFERENCES: (Fries) Kühner, 1939. (Smith, Smith & Weber, 1979; Phillips, 1991/2005; Barron, 1999; McNeil, 2006.) Herb. Kuo 06100305, 10090304.

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Agrocybe erebia

Agrocybe erebia

Agrocybe erebia

Agrocybe erebia

Agrocybe erebia spore print

Agrocybe erebia spores

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Kuo, M. (2003, July). Agrocybe erebia. Retrieved from the MushroomExpert.Com Web site: