Friday, 10 September 2010

Fly Agaric. The Gravity of the Situation.

I found an Amanita muscaria/Fly agaric at pluck lake in the week. The cap of the specimen I took had not opened but two days later had completely expanded, strangely enough the cap had seemed to have bent itself to a horizontal position, even though it was lying down in a collection box.

For mushrooms to drop their spores it's obvious that the cap should be horizontal and remarkably, for many mushrooms, even after being picked or knocked over the stem can curve so that the cap remains upright, revealing what's called negative geotropism, (or gravitropism) that is, naturally responding to gravity to maintain the cap in a horizontal position.

The behaviour can be seen below.

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