Friday, 25 October 2013

Fly Agaric

 I came across this Fly Agaric fungi , while walking the dog the other day in Ashenbank woods.

They are supposed to be common and widespread, but I haven't seen many other examples as yet.

Very iconic this one, with its bright red cap and white stem.

As they push through the ground they look like  white eggs as the cap is covered in a white membrane, as the fungi develops the red cap breaks through the membrane, the white spots you see on the red cap are the remnants of this membrane which eventually fall off.

The newly emerged fungi is round , as it matures it flattens out..

These fly agaric fungi  usually found in Birch or pine woodland .

The fungi has tiny hair like roots which attach themselves to the roots of the tree, siphoning off nutrients, not causing any harm to the tree.

They are poisonous and hallucinogenic. 

As the name suggests it is said that if this fungi is crushed up and mixed with a milk it will kill flies.

I believe this theory has been put to the test, the flies were not killed but were stupefied, maybe making it easier to swat them.

[  The fly agaric does contain as one of its constituents "Ibotenic acid "  which is a mild insecticide  ]  

Another interesting theory, the hallucinogenic effect of this fungi relates to the distortion of size, loss of awareness of time and vivid dreams.

It has been thought that the effects experienced by Alice eating the mushroom in Lewis Carroll's novel ,
"Alice's Adventures in Wonderland"
 are based after the psychoactive effects of Amantia Muscaria 

 Fly Agaric.

Just look,  don't touch.

1 comment:

  1. Iove your photographs and am particularly interested in the effects of fly Agaris xxx