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Cheilymenia stercorea

[ Ascomycetes > Pezizales > Pyronemataceae > Cheilymenia . . . ]

by Michael Kuo

You know that your obsession with fungi has become a true problem when you find yourself on hands and knees excitedly examining Cheilymenia stercorea, which grows only on dung and maxes out at about 4 mm in diameter. It is an "eyelash cup," one of several cup fungi that have tiny hairs, and it is reminiscent of Scutellinia scutellata (which at least has the decency to grow on wood and reach sizes over one centimeter).


Ecology: Saprobic on the dung of domestic animals (primarily horses and cows) and occasionally reported on the dung of wild animals; growing alone or gregariously; spring through fall, or in winter in warmer climates; widely distributed in North America.

Fruiting Body: Cup shaped; .5-4 mm across; upper surface reddish orange, fading to yellowish; undersurface similarly colored or paler, with bristle-like hairs ranging from brownish to yellowish; flesh thin and insubstantial.

Microscopic Features: Spores 14-18 x 8-10 µ elliptical; smooth; without oil droplets. Asci 175-220 x 9-12 µ. Marginal hairs unbranched; lower hairs stellately branched. Cells of undersurface arranged in rows.

REFERENCES: Boudier, 1907. (Denison, 1964; Arora, 1986) Herb. Kuo 01170505.

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Cheilymenia stercorea

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Kuo, M. (2005, January). Cheilymenia stercorea. Retrieved from the MushroomExpert.Com Web site: