When we think of life on Earth we tend to think of the plant and animal kingdoms, but there are also other kingdoms such as bacteria and fungi.
In fact, there are possibly ten times as many fungi species as plants and they occur in a bewildering variety of forms, have unusual life cycles and are overlooked except when we eat them or they attack our buildings and food (causing rot) or our bodies (e.g. tinea).
Below is a slide show of fungi. Watch and be amazed!
Dung Slime Head.jpg
Dung Slime Head
Mauve Splitting Waxcap.jpg
Mauve Splitting Waxcap
Photos by Richard Hartland
The main body of a fungus is an extensive network of fine threads called hyphae that penetrate the soil, plant cells or other hosts. The part we see is just the fruiting body (equivalent to a flower on a plant). Fungi classification is based on the spore-bearing structures (for which a microscope is needed), but their fruiting bodies can be categorized into useful groups.
Over 600 species of fungi have been identified from the Surf Coast Shire.
ANGAIR has created a beautiful colour brochure with over 100 pictures of local fungi, as an introduction to this fascinating subject. You can download it for free!
Low resolution version (1.8 MB download)
The high resolution version of the brochure is a higher quality but the download is much larger, so the brochure is divided into 3 parts to make it easier to download:
High resolution part 1 (6.6 MB)
High resolution part 2 (7.2 MB)
High resolution part 3 (1.6 MB)
A printed version of the brochure can be ordered from ANGAIR.