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Saturday, 24 October 2020

Melanolouca grammopodia , the Grooved Cavalier

Walking around Furnace Ponds in Llanelli, I noticed a few mushrooms in the grass that I assumed to be Common cavalier, Melanoleuca polioleuca. There are a number of similar cavalier species which are difficult to distinguish, but as M. polioleuca is by far the most common I was happy to settle for that. A few feet away from them there was, what I assumed to be, a large funnel species with caps measuring around 15cms across. They were in a prominent place and looked so majestic that I didn't want to spoil the show by picking one so took a small piece of cap from one nearby that had been stood upon.

I checked the spores of the common cavalier and was happy that they were heavily warted and amyloid as would be expected. Though when checking the spores of the large "funnels" they were exactly the same and not smooth like a funnel - In fact I then also noticed the colouring etc of the caps were also identical. Checking on the BMS facebook page I now realise that there is a large-capped cavalier by the name of  M. grammopodia, and the powers that be suggested that this was what I had found. Probably the whole group would be the same as they were all together - which proves the adage that nothing is ever what you first think it is!

Melanolouca grammopodia, the Grooved Cavalier, 15 cms across.

Normal sized Cavalier

Melanolouca grammopodia spores
Melanolouca grammopodia spores.

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