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Resupinatus alboniger

[ Basidiomycetes > Agaricales > Pleurotaceae > Resupinatus ... ]

by Michael Kuo

I found this tiny pleurotoid mushroom on a warm day in February, a few hours before a snow storm rolled in. The little black mushrooms could barely be seen, growing six feet from the ground on a standing but dead honey locust behind my house.

Resupinatus alboniger is similar to the better known Resupinatus applicatus, but that species has a tiny pseudo-stem, a slightly fuzzier cap surface, and nearly round spores. Several species of Hohenbuehelia are also similar, but are usually larger and feature pale gills (as well as dramatic, "metuloid" cystidia).


Ecology: Saprobic; growing alone or gregariously on the recently dead wood of hardwoods; summer and fall (or over winter in warmer climates or during warm spells); widely distributed in eastern North America.

Cap: 2-10 mm across; saucer-shaped and attached from a more or less central point when growing on the undersides of logs--otherwise semicircular to fan-shaped and attached from a lateral point; fairly smooth, but sometimes with fine grayish fuzz in places; flat black to dark gray-brown.

Gills: Radiating from the variable point of attachment (see cap description); close or nearly distant; black to dark blackish brown; sometimes with whitish edges.

Stem: Absent.

Flesh: Blackish; insubstantial.

Odor and Taste: Odor not distinctive; taste mild.

Chemical Reactions: KOH on cap surface negative.

Spore Print: White.

Microscopic Features: Spores 5.5-8 x 2.5-4 µ; long-elliptical to nearly allantoid; smooth; inamyloid. Cheilocystidia fusoid to broadly fusoid, lecythiform, or clavate; to about 25 x 10 µ; often (but not always) digitate with irregular knobs and projections. Pleurocystidia absent. Pileipellis a poorly defined cutis of dark brown, encrusted elements 2.5-6 µ wide, digitate with knobs and projections.

REFERENCES: (Patouillard, 1893) Singer, 1978. (Saccardo, 1895; Thorn, 1986; Thorn & Barron, 1986.) Herb. Kuo 02200503.

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Resupinatus alboniger

Resupinatus alboniger

Resupinatus alboniger

Resupinatus alboniger

Resupinatus alboniger

Resupinatus alboniger

Resupinatus alboniger

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Kuo, M. (2009, April). Resupinatus alboniger. Retrieved from the MushroomExpert.Com Web site: