Love wild mushrooms?
Foraging for food in nature is becoming a popular activity, with wild mushroom hunting being one of the most interesting. Eating anything in the wild should only be done after thoroughly learning how to recognize the difference between those that are edible and those that are not. This is especially true with mushrooms, since so many of those found in the wild are quite poisonous. Done carefully, the rewards are incredible as nothing matches the taste of edible mushrooms. The following ten websites explore the world of wild mushrooms and aid you in learning how to identify those you find. They are listed in order of their Alexa traffic count rating.
1. Missouri Department of Conservation: http://mdc.mo.gov/discover-nature/outdoor-recreation/mushrooming
Global Alexa Rating: 9,666
The Missouri Department of Conservation is involved with helping those in Missouri recognize the edible and poisonous mushrooms that can be found there. This site includes basic mushrooming, better mushroom photos, edible mushrooms and poisonous mushrooms. There are also links to other useful content such as recipes for morel mushrooms. There is also a link to purchase the book, “Missouri’s Wild Mushrooms.”
2. Mushroom-Appreciation: http://www.mushroom-appreciation.com/
Global Alexa Rating: 496,529
Ethnomycology is the study of the use and interaction between fungi and humans. The purpose of this site is to entertain and inform while celebrating the love of mushrooms and fungi. The site explores the science behind them, fun tips, recipes, how-to guides, advice for growing your own mushrooms, identification of mushrooms and much more. There is lots of information here as well as incredible photos.
3. RogersMushrooms: http://www.rogersmushrooms.com/
Global Alexa Rating: 658,938
This site is a perfect reference tool to learn about and identify fungi, including mushrooms, truffles, puffballs and brackets. There is detailed information on 1,660 species of fungi found across Europe and North America. It was compiled by expert mycologist, Roger Phillips and his colleagues. There are over 3,000 descriptive images showing specimens in various stages of growth. The site also includes the ability to buy photos. The recipe section is a nice feature of this site.
4. American Mushrooms: http://americanmushrooms.com/
Global Alexa Rating: 920,513
American Mushrooms was formally launched on March 7, 2006 by David W. Fischer. It is intended to educate, inform and entertain. The sight includes nearly 500 species of fungi and over 1,000 photos. David is the coauthor of two books on mushrooms. He also runs a Facebook page and encourages readers to use it if they need help identifying a mushroom. The site has various featured pages of interest including edible wild mushrooms, mushroom basics, poisonous mushrooms, mushroom photo gallery, coolest mushrooms, lawn & garden mushrooms and tiniest mushrooms.
5. Living Afield: http://livingafield.com/Mushrooms.htm
Global Alexa Rating: 2,198,038
Living Afield is about such thing as edible plants, medicinal plants, meat and, of course, mushrooms. Although it is not a complete list of edible mushrooms, it does contain some of the most common and easily recognized edible mushroom species. While you are there, you will also find the other parts of the website of interest.
6. Fungal Jungal: http://www.fungaljungal.org/
Global Alexa Rating: 2,272,730
Fungal Jungal is a community and resource for mushrooms and all fungus related topics. It covers a wide range of topics including mushroom identification, mushroom recipes, photo gallery, education resources and a place to ask the experts about mushrooms you have found. They also offer mushroom trips and other opportunities. You’ll find essays on the site including newsletters, articles and scientific mycological papers. The Find & Identify section is very informative. There are also recipes on the site.
7. Twin Eagles Wilderness School: http://www.twineagles.org/identifying-wild-mushrooms.html
Global Alexa Rating: 2,405,354
The Twin Eagles Wilderness School offers both adult and youth programs including a transformational nine month wilderness immersion program. The link given is for an informative article written by Jeannine Tidwell about identifying wild mushrooms. In the article is a link to Encountering Edible Wild Mushrooms, which is another useful article on the site. She also lists a number of books that a wild mushroom hunter should consider obtaining and reading.
8. Wild Mushrooms Online: http://www.wildmushroomsonline.co.uk/
Global Alexa Rating: 2,976,426
This is the site for the UK’s biggest fungi foragers club. The site includes lots of categories including spring mushrooms, winter mushrooms, autumn mushrooms, how to pick wild mushrooms, how to identify wild mushrooms, where to find wild mushrooms and much more. The site includes their latest foraging tips and you can arrange a foraging trip. Readers can post photos of mushrooms they need help identifying or any mushroom they want to share. This site is a great way to meet other foragers.
9. Foraging Guide: http://www.foragingguide.com/
Global Alexa Rating: 3,148,605
This site is a foraging guide mushroom collection with descriptions and photos of both edible and poisonous mushroom species. There are articles about collecting and identifying wild mushrooms. There is also a section for finding out what wild mushrooms are in season now. The mushrooms are listed by common name and Latin name. An interesting section is the one on mushroom poisoning.
10. FungiPhoto: http://www.fungiphoto.com/
Global Alexa Rating: 8,078,016
Wild mushroom foraging is not just for the chance to consume a tasty morsel – for Taylor Lockwood, it is about getting a fantastic photo. His work has appeared in National Geographic, the New York Times, the Washington Post and other publications. The photos are organized into various categories, including For Impact, Wild & Weird, Toxic & Deadly, By Color, Edible Medicinal & Cultivated and Bioluminescent Mushrooms. There are a number of items available for purchase as well including The Mushroom Identification Trilogy DVD, a calendar and more.
There are literally thousands of species of fungi – about 4,000 species in the UK, for example. Only a few hundred of these have been determined to be edible or toxic, so you can see how important it is to be certain about what you find before consuming it. If you find something that looks “somewhat” like an edible one, don’t take chances! Toxic mushrooms can make you very ill and many can cause death.