mushroom club of georgia

Mushroom Club of Georgia

mushroom club of georgia

Mushroom Club of Georgia

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August meeting- Michael W. Beug: Mushrooms of Cascadia

August 4, 2021 @ 6:30 pm - 8:00 pm

Identifying the Unusual Mushrooms of Cascadia: Why I wrote and Entirely New Kind of Mushroom Book

My book, Mushrooms of Cascadia: An Illustrated Key, started out as Mushrooms of the Columbia River Gorge. As I was writing, I realized that virtually every habitat found anywhere in the entire Cascadia Region from southern Alaska to central California and from the ocean to the west slopes of the Rocky Mountains can be found within 40 miles of the center of our spectacular and uniquely diverse Columbia River gorge.

Following the Columbia River downstream from Hood River (in the center of the gorge itself), rainfall increases two inches per mile in going the 20 miles from Hood River (average 30” rain per year) to the Bridge of the Gods at Cascade Locks (average 70” rain per year) and reaches rainforest intensity (over 100 inches per year) in the hills 5 miles north and 5 miles south of Cascade Locks. Going upstream rainfall drops to semi-desert levels (14 inches per year) in 20 miles. Going 40 miles north or 40 miles south from Hood River, in the center of the gorge, one gradually transitions from sea level habitats to alpine habitats and to glaciers above the tree line. This diversity produces a stunning diversity of fungi. Some are common and found in many parts of the Cascadia Ecosystem as well as on both sides of North America. Some species are only known from here and from Southern California but have not yet been found in between. Some are unique to our unique area.

In my talk, I will introduce you to some of the fantastic fungal diversity of Cascadia. I will talk about why I wrote a book where the key to the mushrooms is lavishly illustrated with over 1,000 photographs of over 900 species and covers 267 of the book’s 314 pages. The key does not require any use of microscopy and is designed for field use by everyone from beginning mushroom hunters to professional mycologists. The book, at 5.5 x 8.5 inches and a weight of 1 pound 3 ounces, is designed to slip into a small pack and accompany foragers into the field. Detailed comments about special features of the mushrooms, their habitat, their edibility, and other uses including medicinal and artistic uses replace the long formal descriptions found in all other mushroom identification books. The book is also designed to help users learn to recognize and distinguish the major groups of fungi, a skill useful everywhere.



August 4, 2021
6:30 pm - 8:00 pm
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