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Old 6th November 2015
Olybirder Olybirder is online now
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Bird's Nest Fungus

I took this shot at Minsmere in February and had forgotten all about it. There was a little notice indicating that Bird's Nest Fungus was present in the area, with a brief description of it. Unfortunately I thought it said that it was about 5 cm across and after searching for while and finding nothing I had another look and realised that it actually said 5 mm. A closer search revealed the miniature 'bird's nests' complete with their 'eggs'.

I had completely the wrong lens on the camera for the task, so it is a rubbish shot but it is something which I have never seen before, so I thought I would post it anyway.

If anybody has a 'proper' shot of the fungus, please feel free to add it to this thread.




Ron
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Old 6th November 2015
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Re: Bird's Nest Fungus

Nice find Ron - I'd not seen these before. My book has 9 species of them, from a bit bigger than this down to 0.1 mm. This one's Crucibulum laeve (Common Birds Nest) I think.
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Old 6th November 2015
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Re: Bird's Nest Fungus

Thanks John. 0.1mm! I don't think I would ever find that one, let alone photograph it.

Ron
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Old 6th November 2015
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Re: Bird's Nest Fungus

Wow, how interesting, thanks for posting.
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Re: Bird's Nest Fungus

I have been doing a bit of research on Crucibulum laeve. The 'eggs' are called peridioles and contain the fungus spores. They are attached to the cups by fine cords and when raindrops fall into the cups they force the peridioles out, snapping the cords. The cords are coiled and get tangled up with the surrounding vegetation, achieving hydraulic dispersal. Fascinating. The only confusing thing is that the season in the UK is July to October but I photographed these on February 20th.

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Re: Bird's Nest Fungus

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Re: Bird's Nest Fungus

Very interesting an d not something I have heard of before
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Re: Bird's Nest Fungus

Thanks Beagletorque, that is very useful. I see the cords are called 'funicular cords'. I looked up the meaning of 'funicular' and it seems to refer to a rope under tension. Hence the term funicular railway where the two carriages are joined and supported by a cable, I suppose. Who'd have thunk it?

Ron
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Re: Bird's Nest Fungus

Thanks Alf. It was a subject that was really crying out for your macro skills.

Ron
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Old 6th November 2015
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Re: Bird's Nest Fungus

I've heard of these but have never seen them.

I'll look out for them on my next visit to Minsmere.

Dave
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Old 6th November 2015
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Re: Bird's Nest Fungus

Quote:
Originally Posted by DavyG View Post
I've heard of these but have never seen them.

I'll look out for them on my next visit to Minsmere.

Dave
Minsmere is a big place and these fungi are tiny! They were right at the west end of the bridge over the pond on some rotten wood.

Ron
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