Wednesday, 28 October 2015

Sistotrema season

Suddenly every day I'm getting another Sistotrema lesson. This beautiful white athelioid specimen was found on a dead heather stem (I presumed Calluna vulgaris but I have to check- see later). In the field it has an open structure with a more opaque snowy feel where the hyphae have mounted up centrally. By the time it got home the open spaces had closed up and it had become more matted.

The typical skinny Sistotrema sterigmata were the first flag to be waved under the microscope. There being 6 of them certainly helps ease the keying.

Since I ran it under the lens without spore printing I had to seek out some spores to see if I could do without spore printing and fortunately was able to find a few here and there. No cystidia rules out a large number of species anyway.

It was comforting to find in Bernicchia that the species had been noted on an Erica sp. (hence Calluna note!). This isn't unique in the Sistotrema listed in that book, but it is reassuring nonetheless.

The species has scattered records and a good few in Scotland, though I can't remember seeing any listed as being from heather

Dead heather stem

Pretty athelioid structure

More matted back at home

Typical Sistotrema basidium
Some spores in the mix

Another basidium

Clamped bases

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