FUNGI PHOTOS & DESCRIPTIONS

The photos and descriptions in this section of the FUNGIKINGDOM website depict many of the most commonly found macrofungi found in the northeast of the North American continent, as well as some unusual finds. Actually, many of the included fungi are common throughout the U.S. and Canada, but especially in the region extending from the east coast to the Rocky Mountains.

HOW TO USE THIS SITE

FUNGAL ORGANIZATION

Mycologists have organized fungi into orders, families, genera and species. Macro-fungi are divided into two divisions: the Ascomycota and the Basidiomycota. Many fungi in the Ascomycota appear in spring and can be found on wood, soil, leaves and other substrates. They are believed to be evolutionarily older than macro-fungi in the Basidiomycota. Except for morels and truffles, most mushroom enthusiasts focus on macro-fungi in the Basidiomycota. Within each of the two main divisions there are numerous orders. The name of each order ends in the letters ‘-ales’.  Within each order there is one or more likely several families. The name of each family ends in the letters ‘-aceae'. Within each family there are between one and numerous genera. Genera end in the letters ‘-ius’. Within each genera there may be one or more typically numerous species.

The photos of macrofungi displayed here are organized into the two major fungal divisions: the Ascomycota and the Basidiomycota. The included fungi are arranged morphologically by form as they are in field guides. However, in the interest of being up-to-date and scientifically accurate, the descriptions will provide you with the phylogenetic information appropriate for each fungus covered in terms of its Order, Family, and Genus. Since mushroom enthusiasts have also long been drawn to the fascinating organisms popularly called ‘Slime Molds’, I have also included on this site a collection of photos of specimens belonging to the Myxogastria

Click on the division you are interested in viewing (Ascomycetes or Basidiomycetes) and  then click the QUICK LINKS pages listed below and then the name of a general shape or form of fungi that you are interested in examining and learning about. The fungi in each morphologically defined group are pictured and described alphabetically under the following familiar categories: 

ASCOMYCETES: CUP-SHAPED    ASCOMYCETES: FLASK FUNGI  BOLETE-LIKE FUNGI WITH SPONGY PORES   CANTHARELLOID MUSHROOMS   CLUBS & CORALS   GASTROID FUNGI & STINKHORNS   GELATINOUS FUNGI  GILLED MUSHROOMS    LACTARIUS, LACTIFLUUS & RUSSULAS      POLYPORES, STEREUMS & CRUSTS   TOOTHED FUNGI

Note that many fungi are listed with two names: the new one (genus and species) followed by the older one (in parentheses) used in many excellent, but older field guides. I have done this so it will be easy to find descriptions in the literature or online. You can use either name. They are generally considered synonyms.

To see enlarged versions of each species photo, just click on it. Numerous photos have descriptions posted beneath them. More will be added as time permits.