Hydnellum peckii - Not!
With a common name of Strawberries and Cream, one would think the H. peckii was at least edible. In the new edition of Steve Trudell book, Mushrooms of the Pacific Northwest, the picture of the H. peckii to me looks more like vomit! However, Steve does do something in his PNW book that I have not seen before and that is he mentions a "distinctly rough-hairy" mushroom with a "sharp peppery taste, that grabs the back of your throat" as a similar species but that resides on the east coast. Hydnellum diabolus.
So when SSMC sent in a tooth fungi found by Mary McCallum that was expected to be H. peckii, we were shocked when the sequence suggested the "eastern" H. diabolus! Where this sequence results gets especially interesting is that H. diabolus has been virtually abandoned as a species and has instead now been lumped in with the Strawberries and Cream species. But when Mary’s sequence is compared to other species in GenBank, the closest match to H. peckii was a dismal 88.86%! Taken with the characteristics suggested by Steve Trudell, this is absolutely a distinct species and any suggestion to combine it with the H. peckii is wrong. It looks like the conclusion that the species is an east coast species is also incorrect. The benefit of DNA!
While the best case match to H. peckii is a dismal 88.86%, Mary’s mushroom does match a recent sequence from the Oregon Coast at 100% with a 100%qc. Confirmation, the species exist here. Besides getting it sequenced, Mary also used some of the fungi as an experimental dye where she dyed a silk scarf. Watch for a picture of that on Facebook.
The following sequence results from SSMC efforts represent those orders placed after the original MP Project representing OLY numbers. This list represents the orders placed and are grouped according to order shipped. Many - but not all - orders are through FunDiS. Each order number is completely arbitrary. As of this date at the end of 2021, many of these have not yet been sequenced. - Steve Ness 1/9/2022
Order #1 Project 1037 sequenced and ID determined (Molecular Solutions) OLY-MS0001 through OLY-MS0028
Order #2 Project 1037 sequenced and ID determined (Molecular Solutions) OLY-MS0029 through OLY-MS0056
Order #3 Project 1037 sequenced and ID determined (FunDiS) OLY-FD0057 through OLY-FD0083
Order #4 Project 1037 sequenced, ID determined and in GenBank (Alvalabs - Spain) OLY-AL0084 through OLY-AL0097
Order #5 Project 1034 sequenced, ID determined and GenBank pending (FunDiS) OLY(H)-FD0099 through OLY(H)-FD0113
Order #6 Project Ramaria - sequenced and ID determined GenBank pending (FunDiS) OLY(R)-FD0114 through OLY(R)-FD0143
Order #7 Project Ramaria - mixed up order at BOLD (paid for by SSMC) OLY(R)-FD0114 through OLY(R)-FD0154
Order #8 Project 1034 sequenced, ID determined, GenBank pending (6 pd by SSMC) OLY(H)-FD0155 through OLY(H)-FD0175
Order #9 Project 1037 sequenced, ID determined, GenBank pending (mixed order) OLY-FD0176 through OLY-FD0205
Order #10 Project 1037 sequenced, ID determined, GenBank pending (pd by SSMC) OLY-FD0206 through OLY-FD0217
Order #11 Special Order Cathie Aimes Lab - pending OLY-CA0218 through OLY-CA0231
Order #12 Special Order Alan Rockefeller - pending OLY(S)-AR0232 through OLY(S)-AR0264
Order #13 Project 1037, pending sequence results at BOLD (partial pd by SSMC) OLY-0265 through OLY-0290
Order #14 Special Gyromitra Oder with Alden Dirks - no cost to SSMC OLY-0291 through OLY0296
Order #15 Project 1034 pending sequence results at BOLD OLY(H)-0297 through OLY(H)-0316
Order #16 Project 1037 pending sequence results at BOLD OLY-FD0317 through OLY-FD0340
Order #17 Project 1034 pending sequence results at BOLD OLY(H)-0341 through OLY (H)-0366
Order #18 Mycoblitz results (By SSMC Member)
Arrhenia, but Arrhenia what?
The latest SSMC sequence to be bouncing around the world is an observation by Kitty that she found at the Port of Shelton prairie edge habitat. It originally was expected to go into GenBank as Arrhenia subglobisemen which is a rather new species described from France in 2016. However our friend Andrus just led a paper that just coincidentally looked at the Arrhenia group. In that paper the scientist suggested that two sequences from Norway likely should be worked up and given species status as sister species to A. subglobisemen. They are calling the potential new species AC-1.
What is fascinating is that Kitty's sequence matches extremely close to the two Norwegian sequence!! How is that even possible given the distance between the two? The scientist were excited to get the sequence of this mushroom and were especially happy to get the quality photos that Kitty took and we shared with them. Watch this space to see how this turns out. For now Jean Lodge has Kitty's mushroom moving on as Arrhenia aff. subbglobisemen.
What fabulous pictures of a beautiful mushroom. If you put this species name into the massive GenBank repository and request results, you get just one hit! That result is a sequence by SSMC made on a mushroom Lauren Re´submitted. How can such a strikingly beautiful fungi have only one sequence? If you do a Blast of the one entry in GenBank, which looks at all the other gazillions of sequences to find best matches, there is only one okay match - to Omphalina viridis. Same species which demonstrates how quickly taxonomy is changing the names of mushrooms. New genus name AND new species name! According to Buck McAdoo in his new book Profiles of Northwest Fungi, before this name the species was known as Clitocybe smaragdina where it is was then thought to be -"Rare in North America.......it had been recorded only four time between 1939 and 1962". If you do a search in UNITE, the largest sequence bank in Europe, here too you get just these two sequences.
If any individual or scientist anywhere in the world goes to GenBank or UNITE to learn more about this species, that one hit that they will first see is a sequence done by SSMC member Lauren Re´ . The first and so far only!!! But wait, SSMC has done a second sequence of this species turned in by Lucas Hickey that is yet not in GenBank. Again, SSMC is making information available to scientist that no one else is. Fabulous pictures by Lauren!
Maybe a Sarcodon?
Sometimes the DNA results are surprising to what they match as in the case of Melodie's H. reidii, while at other times we get a DNA match to hardly anything and wonder what the DNA is now trying to tell us. From high in foothills of the Olympics on the Wynoochee Pass Trail, Regina found the interesting tooth fungi pictured here. Regina thought maybe Sarcodon calvcatus but a DNA match to the closest of that species was a dismal 83.08% (66% qc). Remembering that a good number to start thinking species separation is 97% - so at 83% this is clearly a different species. When we do a blast in GenBank, which compares Regina's sequence to all others in this huge database, there are only two matches worth considering. The only really close match is to a fungi from China at 99.1% (99%qc) which is listed as a Sarcodon but with no species name. The second closest match is to maybe a mushroom from Scotland. This one has no species name attached either so likely these three belong to a new undescribed and unnamed species. One from Urumqi China, one from Scotland and now a third form Wynoochee Pass in the Olympics! How crazy is that that these three far flung mushrooms are so closely related - but not to anything else? Great discovery by Regina.
Melodie Gates of SSMC found the first example of this mushroom in Washington State during an early Evergreen MP foray - actually likely to be the first confirmed observation this side of the Mississippi River! A second 100% match to Melodie's find was later sequenced also by the SSMC. The second sequence from a very different location and habitat as it was taken from the Olympic Mountains old growth forest. This second mushroom was also a fascinating surprise. The fact that these two sequences expands the range of this species by half a continent is surprising enough, but there is more to the story about Melodie's find; the mushrooms from the PNW match up closest with European H. reidii. Sequences from Wales and Norway are virtually a perfect match while matches to eastern NA are more distant. None of the field guides from western US have this species even listed so it likely very rare here. Usually with an ID characteristic of the sweet smell of honey. Unknown edibility.