After a pretty dismal and cold Winter, followed by a pretty wet and dismal start to Spring, there was at least one form of life that really revelled in the conditions. And while the weather hasn’t been all that conducive to outdoor activities and associated enjoyment, there were a few interesting diversions where such subject matter kept me out of the doldrums. In this instance it was once again one of those interesting things found in damp and wet places, fungi. You can kind of call it mould, as fungi is related to mould as well as yeasts. This won’t be so much of a story, but more a pictorial record of some of the types of fungi that I came across this year. These ones were perhaps the most interesting, as there were lots of small mushrooms about that were quite ordinary.
When I wrote my last story about Fungi, I was looking at venturing into some of our rain forests to see what I could find in the damper parts of our region; unfortunately, that never eventuated. So why am I writing another story on fungi? Well, as it turned out, as autumn rolled along, with winter in ‘hot’ pursuit, there started to appear some rather unusual fungi on what you could call our doorstep (the top of our driveway) which I couldn’t ignore. Added to that, I finally decided to have a look at our local Lyrebird Forest Walk, which I’d been meaning to do for around four years. It was only a short walk that I did that day, but it presented quite a range of fungi compared to what lies closer to home.
As the old axiom goes, a rolling stone gathers no moss, and Mythbusters proved that to be true. As part three of my trilogy about lichens, fungi and mosses, I was wondering how deep into some of our rain forest areas I’d have to go to find examples of mosses (with Mossvale Park displaying less moss than you’d expect). But with the weather we’ve been having this Winter and Spring, a lot of moss has emerged in our yard, so it was an easy place to begin. Funny how sometimes the things of interest are right around you and under your nose, but you tend to overlook them because they are so familiar.
As the second in the series about lichen, fungi and moss, one of the other life forms that are found just about everywhere is the fungi. And when you live in a temperate climate where there are lots of forests, good rainfall and rich, fertile, soil, the fungi tend to thrive. I haven’t really started to explore, in earnest, this aspect of what grows underfoot around here, but have managed to compile a small selection from daily walks in the locality and ones that I’ve found in other places as well. I’m not even going to try to identify any of them.
Being a temperate climate, with elements of rain forest, South Gippsland is home to a wide variety of lichen, fungi and mosses. I’ve always been fascinated by rain forests and rain forest denizens and the like so, whenever I go anywhere, I always have my camera at hand prepared for a photo opportunity. And so it is that I end up with a slowly building collection of photographs covering the often overlooked of our forest denizens; nothing that one would claim as being exceptional, but interesting to me at least. They represent small alien worlds and life forms which, in a way they are to many people.