Wednesday, 14 March 2012
Scarlet Elf Cups at Clyne
Scarlet Elf Cups, Sarcoscypha austriaca are mushrooms that belong to a group commonly called 'cup fungi' due to their shape and are extremely easy to identify. The fungi fruits over winter and spring and in Clyne they were out in great numbers.
They live off dead deciduous wood that litter the wood floor and are usually attached to the substrate by a short stem as can be seen below. The inner surface is bright crimson and the outside a lighter shade which is the result of tiny hairs. They cap starts off in a typical cup shape but they can flatten out and become more tattered as they mature.
The photo below shows some tiny insects called Collembola, which feed off organic matter, including fungi.