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I am spotting a lot of puffballs lately and on a walk last week I found a fly agaric at its early stage of growth as a fruiting body. The fruiting body starts off as an egg shape in the ground looking all warty like the one in the video. at this point the mushroom is young and preparing its spores for dispersal once open.

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The microscopic spores are generated like an assembly line forming all over the gills in huge volumes. The gills on the Amanita species are white and are protected by a skirt that falls away when the mushroom (fruiting body) is ready to release them.

At this point the fruiting body (mushroom) hasn’t done its job and why I left it alone. We are also at a point where people are interested in puffballs so I felt it was important to point out care should be taken if looking for the pure white spongy marshmallow-like interior of a puffball rather than the structures you’ll find when cutting open an Amanita still in its early stage of growth with the universal veil intact.

It’s a big risk as the family has the death cap, destroying angel which are deadly due to their amatoxins. Others like the panther cap which often is referred to as deadly, has toxins and psychoactive compounds – not a mistake I’d like to make. The Fly agaric also has toxins and psychoactive compounds so another risk – too many risks in this family for me. Unless you know how detoxify these mushrooms for whatever purpose (medicinal/asking your ancestors key questions) I’d not risk consuming them at all.


Author george

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