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Calocera cornea

[ Basidiomycota > Dacrymycetales > Dacrymycetaceae > Calocera ... ]

by Michael Kuo

Look for Calocera cornea after heavy rains on the deadwood of oaks and other hardwoods, where it appears in groups of slick, cylindric fruiting bodies with rounded-off or sharpened tips. This mushroom looks more like a tiny club fungus than a jelly fungus, but its flesh is gelatinous, and microscopic examination reveals the distinctive Y-shaped basidia that characterize members of the Dacrymycetales—a large group within the jelly fungi.

The similar Calocera furcata grows on conifer wood; its spores are septate 3 times, while the spores of Calocera cornea have only one septum. Calocera viscosa is a more robust species (up to 8 cm tall) with orange fruiting bodies that are usually branched two or three times; it grows in clumps, usually on moss-covered, buried conifer wood.


Ecology: Saprobic; growing scattered to gregariously on the deadwood of hardwoods (especially oaks), usually on sticks up to about 2 inches in diameter; summer and fall; originally described from Germany; widely distributed in Europe, North America, Central America, South America, Asia, and Oceania. The illustrated and described collections are from Illinois and North Carolina.

Fruiting Body: Cylindric, with a rounded to sharpened apex; occasionally shallowly forked near the tip; to about 18 mm high and 2 mm thick; surface bald and slick, orange to orangish yellow; apex often shriveling and turning orangish brown with age; flesh firm but gelatinous, yellow; base with a tiny pad of white mycelium.

Odor: Not distinctive.

Spore Print: Whitish.

Microscopic Features: Spores 7–10 x 3–4 µm; allantoid; smooth; 0–1-septate; hyaline in KOH. Basidia and probasidia Y-shaped; 25–40 x 2–4 µm. Clamp connections not found.

REFERENCES: (Batsch, 1783) Fries, 1827. (Saccardo, 1888; Brasfield, 1938; Martin, 1952; McNabb, 1965; Lowy, 1971; Reid, 1974; Phillips, 1981; Breitenbach & Kränzlin, 1986; Metzler & Metzler, 1992; Horn, Kay & Abel, 1993; Barron, 1999; Miller & Miller, 2006; Binion et al., 2008; Shirouzu et al., 2009; Buczacki et al., 2012; Raymundo et al., 2012; Shirouzu et al., 2013; Kuo & Methven, 2014; Desjardin, Wood & Stevens, 2015; Siegel & Schwarz, 2016; Alvarenga & Xavier-Santos, 2017; Baroni, 2017; Elliott & Stephenson, 2018; Læssøe & Petersen, 2019; Zamora & Ekman, 2020; McKnight et al., 2021.) Herb. Kuo 05310704, 07100801, 07172101.

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Calocera cornea

Calocera cornea

Calocera cornea

Calocera cornea

Calocera cornea
Immature basidium

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Kuo, M. (2021, August). Calocera cornea. Retrieved from the MushroomExpert.Com Web site: