Welcome to Catnapin's

The Cryptogams Gallery

Fungus - Stinkhorn Mushroom

Previous Arrow    Wildflower Index     Next Arrow


Mushrooms and molds are fungus.  A fungus is not a true plant.  It does not photosynthesize light into a food source.  The structures we see and call mushrooms are the reproductive parts of a fungus that lives underground or under bark.


Stinkhorn Mushrooms reproduce uniquely.  They start off as a white round "egg" underground.  The stalk grows quickly.  Instead of releasing spores, it produces a gelatinous coating that stinks, which draws flies and they carry the spores.  Most Stinkhorns have a "head" that resembles a penis.  Others have elaborate arms.





Division Basidiomycota     Family Phallaceae

Probably   Elegant Stinkhorn Mutinus elegans

This orangey/coral colored fungus is about 3" long.  Surface is sponge-like.  The stick was originally at the broken end.  Grew on a tree in a thicket.  Originally the spongy surface would have been covered in a stinky brown gelatin that attracts flies.  The color is lighter then a young plant.  It was growing in a juniper grove.

Photos taken in Taylor County, Texas, June 2003


Similar Species

Dog Stinkhorn  Mutinus caninus

Similar in shape and spore jelly, except, it has a slender stem at the tip, lacks the bright color, and less of the stalk is covered in the brown goo.  The lower portion of the stalk is more pitted then an even sponge texture.






Division Basidiomycota     Family Phallaceae

Probably   Stalked Lattice Stinkhorn Lysurus periphragmoides

This coral colored fungus is about 1 1/2" long.  Structure is sponge-like.  Center is hollow.  Head has part of the "egg" still attached.  The head would have been a ball of red lace with black gelatin between.  It was growing in an open area of limestone rubble.

Photos taken in Taylor County, Texas, July 2007



Previous Arrow    Wildflower Index     Next Arrow


to reduce spam, change "at" to @
please be specific

Home Page    IconWriting   Art Index   Martial Arts Index   Fossil Index   Critter Index   About Us   Links

Copyright Notice:  All photos are copyrighted and protected by the laws of the United States.
Unauthorized duplication for sale or distribution is prohibited.