Birmingham Natural History Society: Mycology Section


Descriptions of the Species

1. Mike Austin:   Male. Cap with thin receding fibrils. Stem substantial, short. Smell of old lubricating oil. Cortinarius reaction - shows definite signs of interest, but claims specimen to be another genus. Sneaks specimens home, where after days of bewilderment, denies all knowledge of the collection. Recently found attacking fallen trees with a large knife. This dismemberment is often accompanied by a stream of foul expletives - 'Melanomma pulvis-pyrius, Mycosphaerella punctiformis, Chaetosphaeria myriocarpa', and with a violent scattering of wood chippings. Occasional on forays, seems confined to the North of the county, and to South Staffs.

2. Chris Lewis:   Male. Cap strongly fibrillose and with a small veil, often protected by tasteful hat. Stem substantial. Smell of spent cordite, liable to expound on the subject. Cortinarius reaction vaguely positive. A very distinctive species, there are no flies on him, but on his insectiverous plants. Occurrence fairly frequent.

3 Ian Lang:   Male. Cap fibrillose, dark. Stem medium. Smell of crisp new banknotes. Cortinarius reaction innocently positive. Shows great interest. This species is common on forays.

4. Bill Moodie:   Male. Cap thickly fibrillose. Stem resembling large hairy caber. Smell of whisky. Cortinarius reaction negative. When presented with a Cort., this quiet species becomes speechless, and wanders off into the undergrowth, moaning quietly. A very large species, which can readily be confirmed by checking for haggis in the pocket. Tends to disappear on forays, but invariably is first to return for lunch. Very common on forays.

5. John Williams:   Male. Cap thickly fibrillose, light coloured. Stem substantial. Smell faint, of wet dog, often accompanied by the said quadreped. Cortinarius reaction negative, pleads for specimen to be taken away from him. Reacts strangely to changes in weather patterns. A frequent species on forays.

6. John Sells:   Male. Cap fibrillose. Stem medium. Smell none. Cortinarius reaction negative, immediately slips the specimen into someone else's basket. Occasionally seen in running gear with compass. Occurrence generally frequent, particularly in the Coventry area.

7. Chris Berry:  Male. Cap fibrillose. Stem substantial. Smell absent. Cortinarius reaction positive, specimen often removes fungus in order to capture its portrait, two shots at a time. This friendly specimen is frequent on forays, particularly in the Sutton Park area of the county.

8. Roy Crees:  Male. Cap flocculose, white. Stem thin, of medium length. Smell none. Cortinarius reaction smilingly positive, often stares at a specimen for hours. Occurrence frequent, especially when weather is favourable.

9. John Roberts:  Male. Cap smooth. Stem medium. Smell none. Cortinarius reaction somewhat negative, but can be persuaded. This species is becoming more common on forays.

10. David Antrobus:  Male. Cap smooth, but with fringe of thin fibrils, usually with blue covering of foreign nautical variety. Stem substantial. Smell of chalk dust, damp blackboard dusters, and academia. Cortinarius reaction positive, but only relates to first specimen collected, negative to further collections. Usually accompanied by a rather large white plastic collecting utensil. Frequent at all forays.

11. Bert Brand:  Male. Cap smooth, but with rather large white fibrillose veil at the front, descending from below the nose to mid chest level. Smell of photographic developers and fixer. Cortinarius reaction positive, fearlessly handling dangerous and undescribed toadstools. Very frequent and widely distributed, both within the county and throughout the country, wherever the BMS is known to frequent. Often carries a photographic device and a thing for standing it on.

12. Dinah Griffin:  Female. Cap - handsome display of waves and curls. Stem hidden under slacks, believed to be medium. Smell of Channel Tunnel No. 143Y. Cortinarius reaction positive. This species is most often encountered in the south of the county, and has even occasionally been seen fraternising with the BMS. in other parts of the country.

13. Val Roberts:  Female. Cap a goodly covering of wavy fibrils. Stem short. Smell of Chateau Warnact 1998. Cortinarius reaction positive, passing them to John. This species is also becoming more common on forays.

14. Gill Brand:  Female. Cap with long, very distinguished fibrils, with attractive curl at end. Stem with striate covering, and usually green and peronate at the base. Smell Chanel No.7. Cortinarius reaction negative, will charmingly change the subject to something more pleasant, then turn away to examine the nearest plant for the presence of corrosion, completely ignoring the cort. Frequency rare, due to suffering from rust and smut. Found in and about universities and places of learning.

15 Janet Antrobus:  Female. Cap with light silky long fibrils. Stem long, with smooth covering. Cortinarius reaction negative. Smell of new baking, with flowery perfume overtones. Rare on forays, but often encountered at courses, providing sustinance to overworked mycologists.

16. Clare Hinchliffe:  Female. Cap fibrils thick and extensive. Stem medium, very long. Smell faint, of Mac printing ink. Cortinarius reaction positive, specimen goes into a trance over the artistic qualities of the specimen, then gives it away. This species has strong web forming qualities. However has been known to ascend trees at amazing speed when an arachnid has been sighted. Frequent on forays.

17 Sue Lang:  Female. Cap with long straight fibrils.Stem medium. Cortinarius reaction positive, after consultation with Ian. Smell faint, of laboratory chemicals. This fresh young species is of frequent occurrence on forays.

18. Sian Davies:  Female.  Cap Fine, light, fashionable, eccentric, concrescent behind. Stem short, elegant. Smell of laboratory chemicals, and chalk. Cortinarius reaction positive. Prone to write names down on little packets. Frequency, rare to occasional.

19 Margaret Crees:  Female. Cap light and wavy, Stem very slender, short. Smell absent. Cortinarius reaction positive, but fleeting, immediately passing specimen to the nearest person, even to passing walkers. This species invariably appears with Roy, both being frequent on forays. Also can be spotted on Worcestershire forays.

20 Jane Sells:  Female. Cap fibrils dark, of medium length, Stem medium. Smell absent. Cortinarius reaction negative, treating them with complete indifference. Easily diverted by pretty flowering plants. This species is occasional on forays.

21. Pauline Sands:  Female. Cap with goodly straight covering. Stem short, fairly robust. Smell faint, of garlic butter and mushrooms mixed with preserving oils and potions. Cortinarius reaction negative, however the reaction to edible species is strongly positive. This species was previously to be found in remote Northern regions, but now found in allotments in the Alcester area. At forays, this species often comes up suddenly and unexpectedly, due to not getting to the foray on time.

Red Data List of Rare Warwickshire Mycologists.

Over the years, a number of notable mycologists have disappeared from the area. These species are only recorded occasionally, if at all.If spotted in Warwickshire, the ocurrence should be recorded and full information passed to any member of the committee, who will make the necessary arrangements for the conservation of the species in the area.

  • Ted Blackwell. This species is recorded frequently in Shropshire, particularly in the Ludlow area. Warwickshire records, however are few and any sightings should be entered in the records immediately. Look for a species with very sparse cap fibrils ans short stem. This species could be easily overlooked.

  • Lil Evans. This delightful species disappeared at the same time as the following species. Perhaps an attack of Myxomatitis, suffered early on in the Warwickshire Survey had something to do with it. The two Evans species were often seen together, so that if one is recorded, the other should be searched for.

  • Reg Evans. At one time, this species was regularly to be found attacking fallen trees with a huge knife. Alas it has not been spotted in Warwickshire for some time, and any records would be most welcome. It is understood the this, and the above species have both an exclusively Eastern distribution, and that the area is awash with records. Look for a relatively fragile appearance, and very sparse white cap fibrils, and a very faint medicinal scent.

  • Bill Mason. Some time ago, this species was transplanted across the Atlantic Ocean. Unfortunately this resulted in complete disappearance from Warwickshire, and indeed from Britain. We live in hope that one day perhaps we may be able to record this species here again, even if only fleetingly.

  • Nancy Montgomery. This species was of major importance in the early days of the Warwickshire Survey and was recorded on virtually all forays. The distribution of the species altered, and could only be recorded in the South of England in recent times.A prolonged attack of Uredinalitis was thought to be a contributory factor. The species is genuinely missed in Warwickshire.

  • Maurice Rotheroe. This species was once exceedingly common, but after suffering bouts of Coprinitis, followed closely by Russulaitis, has only rarely been recorded in the area. It is rumoured that the species may still be found in the far West, recumbant on sandy beaches, or on waxy meadows. Look for a robust, friendly appearance, and very thick covering of dark wavy fibrils.

  • John Wheeley. Last recorded in 1986, this friendly species can occasionally be seen on BMS forays, but appears to be entirely absent from Warwickshire. (There has been a rumour of a sighting of the species recently on the M46 in a fast moving metallic object, but this requires confirmation) Look for thick and dark radial cap fibrils and a very long stem.

    We apologise to anyone who feels they have been left out of the above documents.

    We also apologise to those who have been included.


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