Big laughing gym at Seal Bay

From an email by Jocie to the Botany Group on October 24.

There are some spectacular displays of “big laughing gym”, also known as “western jumbo gym” (Gymnopilus ventricosus) at Seal Bay Park. You can find it about 3/4 of the way down the main beach trail (on the right) that descends down the ravine. Just before the beach, fork to the right and just past the little bridge (just before the beach) there are several more clumps on the left.

The common name comes from the hallucinogenic properties that some other members of this genus have. However, Gymnopilus ventricosus is actually not psychoactive.

This shroom grows in bright yellow clusters on rotting logs, snags and stumps. Older specimens have a distinctive ring.

[Click a photo to enlarge it.]

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