July Monthly Updates

Photo by Andrew Turner

July (Zoom) Monthly Meeting
Tuesday, July 20th 6:00 – 7:00 pm  

False morels or true lorchels?
Taxonomy, ecology, toxicology, and edibility of Gyromitra mushrooms


with Alden Dirks

“False morels” is a term commonly used to refer to mushrooms that look similar to the prized edible true morels, Morchella spp., but are regarded as poisonous. But what if the naming of something by what it is not obscures and diminishes the unique aspects of that thing? In this talk, we will explore the fascinating biology and questions of toxicology and edibility of Gyromitra spp. as they are, true lorchels – mushrooms with their own story to tell. What species are present in our area? How do lorchels make their living? What is the nature of the gyromitrin mycotoxin? Are lorchel mushrooms edible? For my PhD thesis research at University of Michigan, I am studying the evolution of gyromitrin in lorchels and think a lot about these broader questions too. Even though we are already into the summer months, it is never too late or early to learn more about a charismatic group of spring mushrooms!

Monthly Meeting (on Zoom)


Thanks to those who made it to Tavis Lynch’s talk during our June monthly meeting! Please consider supporting Tavis by attending an event by the Northwest Wisconsin Myco Enthusiasts group or purchasing his latest book (with Britt Bunyard) The Beginner’s Guide to Mushrooms: Everything You Need to Know, from Foraging to Cultivating


Mushroom Foraging 101 at DeForest Public Library
Tuesday, August 6th 6:00pm

203 Library Street, DeForest

Join Hawthorn McCracken and Andrew Turner of the Madison Mycological Society for a beginner’s guide to foraging for fungi. We will discuss ethical and safety considerations for foraging in Wisconsin. Attendees will also learn about some beginner-friendly mushroom species to confidently start their foraging adventures.


Witch’s Butter (Tremella mesenterica) uploaded by community scientist, Kathleen Thompson

Community Science Update

We introduced our community science project during our April monthly meeting. If you weren’t able to attend, don’t worry! We’ve recorded it for you. In addition to finding cool fungi, folks who participate have the opportunity to win some MMS swag at the end of the year.

Keep an eye out for news about our July challenge and upcoming, in-person community science events!



Ways to Connect


We have a number of different ways that members can reach out to each other and we want to make sure everyone knows how to stay in touch! 

We have a Google Group (https://groups.google.com/g/madison-mycological-society) that was mostly inactive, but we would love for folks to use it. You may see some more activity there from board members as we resurrect this really helpful tool! Please join by sending an email to mad-myco-soc-list+join@googlegroups.com.

We also have a Facebook group (https://www.facebook.com/groups/1676228212462783) where members have been posting photos of their finds and sharing info!

We also have a community Slack (https://madisonmycosociety.slack.com)! Slack is a channel-based messaging platform which allows users to chat in real time. Click this link to join! 


Forays


We are excited to have you join us in person this year for forays! Please be advised, we have a strict COVID protocol that is subject to change as the pandemic continues to change over time. We will be limiting capacity for forays, so please be sure to fill out this form (below) as soon as possible to help our whole MMS family be able to participate. We look forward to seeing you. You will receive a confirmation email and further details from the Board of Directors when you have been successfully signed up.

Upcoming dates: 
Sat – Jul 10    Governor Dodge State Park 
Sat – Jul 24    Lake Kegonsa 
Sat – Aug 14    Magnolia Bluff State Natural Area
Sat – Aug 28    Southern Kettle Moraine 
Sat – Sep 11    Anderson Farm County Park
Sat – Sep 25    Devil’s Lake
 

Thank you!

Sign Up Form

June 2021 Monthly Newsletter

Donald County Park, Mt Horeb

Improving Soil Quality Using Mushrooms
June Monthly Meeting
Tuesday, June 15th 6:00 – 7:00 pm

with Tavis Lynch


Adding mushrooms to your garden can help in many ways. They can bring valuable nutrition to your plants, aid in soil aeration, and even suppress weeds! Learn about the mushroom that can change the way you garden forever.

Tavis is an amateur mycologist from Cumberland, Wisconsin. He operates a shiitake mushroom farm in the northwest corner of the state and is a mycology instructor for 22 schools in the Upper Midwest. He has been studying wild and cultivated fungi since the 1980s and has written three books on the topic. Go Brewers.

Join the Monthly Zoom Meeting here


Community Science Update

We introduced our community science project during our April monthly meeting. If you weren’t able to attend, don’t worry! We’ve recorded it for you. In addition to finding cool fungi, folks who complete all challenges or upload an observation every month can have the opportunity to win some MMS swag at the end of the year.


June Challenge – Cerioporus squamosus

This month, as you’re out looking for mushrooms, keep an eye out for Cerioporus squamosus (previously known as Polyporus squamosus). This polypore is also known by its common names: Dryad’s saddle or Pheasant back. It’s most often found growing on hardwood stumps, logs, and trees and can be identified by its distinctive, flattened scales on the cap (squamosus means “scaly” in Latin). Learn more about this species here. As a bonus, if you find this fungus outside of the Arboretum, it is considered edible and is much easier to find than morels. Happy hunting!


Featured Observation

So far, our community has documented 30 different species at the Arboretum. This cool observation was submitted by Stephanie Petersen in April. Urnula craterium or Devil’s Urn can be seen through May and into June, so there’s still a chance to see it this year.


Ways to Connect

We have a number of different ways that members can reach out to each other and we want to make sure everyone knows how to stay in touch! 

We have a Google Group (https://groups.google.com/g/madison-mycological-society) that was mostly inactive, but we would love for folks to use it. You may see some more activity there from board members as we resurrect this really helpful tool! Please join by sending an email to mad-myco-soc-list+join@googlegroups.com.

We also have a Facebook group (https://www.facebook.com/groups/1676228212462783) where members have been posting photos of their finds and sharing info!

We also have a community Slack (https://madisonmycosociety.slack.com)! Slack is a channel-based messaging platform which allows users to chat in real time. Click this link to join!


Forays

We are excited to have you join us in person this year for forays! Please be advised, we have a strict COVID protocol that is subject to change as the pandemic continues to change over time. We will be limiting capacity for forays, so please be sure to fill out this form (below) as soon as possible to help our whole MMS family be able to participate. We look forward to seeing you. You will receive a confirmation email and further details from the Board of Directors when you have been successfully signed up.

Thank you!

Sign Up Form

May Monthly Newsletter


Photo by Wendell Smith

May Monthly Meeting
Tuesday, May 18th 6:00 – 7:00 pm  with Trevor Rodgers
amateur mycologist and fungi enthusiast

From Spore to Sequence
Have you ever wondered how DNA sequences can be obtained from mushrooms and used to identify them?

During this presentation we will take a look into the process of DNA barcoding of fungi. We will explore molecular techniques, such as DNA extraction and PCR, to prepare for sanger sequencing. We will also talk about using genbank. This is one not to miss!

Monthly Meeting Zoom Meeting


Ways to Connect
We have a number of different ways that members can reach out to each other and we want to make sure everyone knows how to stay in touch! 

We have a Google Group (https://groups.google.com/g/madison-mycological-society) that was mostly inactive, but we would love for folks to use it. You may see some more activity there from board members as we resurrect this really helpful tool! Please join by sending an email to mad-myco-soc-list+join@googlegroups.com.

We also have a Facebook group (https://www.facebook.com/groups/1676228212462783) where members have been posting photos of their finds and sharing info!

We also have a community Slack (https://madisonmycosociety.slack.com)! Slack is a channel-based messaging platform which allows users to chat in real time. Click this link to join! 


Forays
We are excited to have you join us in person this year for forays! Please be advised, we have a strict COVID protocol that is subject to change as the pandemic continues to change over time. We will be limiting capacity for forays, so please be sure to fill out this form (below) as soon as possible to help our whole MMS family be able to participate. We look forward to seeing you. You will receive a confirmation email and further details from the Board of Directors when you have been successfully signed up.

 Thank you!

Sign Up Form



Foray Kits
We are really excited to share that we’ve put together foray kits! Each kit is $25. In each kit you will receive: A copy of “Mushrooms in Your Pocket” from University of Iowa PressA mesh bag with the MMS logoA magnification loupeA sharpieWax bagsIf you’re interested in buying a foray kit we can ship or drop it off on your porch! 

Membership
Become a member of the Madison Mycological Society or RENEW your membership. Membership is only $15/year, $10/year for students, or $25 for partners/families. The fee helps the Board fund forays, programming, and a special event or two for the members. Lifetime memberships are also available for $100! You can also fiscally sponsor a membership for another human. All of our Board members volunteer their time, so your contribution goes right back into MMS. Last year we had a whopping 135 active members — up from 60 the previous year. So please — sign up or renew now and bring along a friend for next year’s ride. It’s only going to get better!

 Become a Member/Renew Here

April 2021 Updates!

Photo by Nick Olejniczak

Welcome back!

We are so very excited to be starting up again after our winter break! I hope you have all had a healthy and happy rest and are just as pumped as the board is for another year with the Madison Mycological Society. The board met earlier this year to talk about our goals and there is a link to a survey below to get some info from you about what you would like to see.

We are busy working on plans to safely get together for in-person forays. If you would like to get involved in any aspect of the planning we encourage you to get in touch with the board (madison.mycological.society@gmail.com).

Thank you so much for your continued support! Can’t wait to see you all soon. 

 — Daniella Echeverria, Board of Directors member

April Monthly Meeting



Madison Mycological Society/UW-Arboretum
Fungal Diversity Community Science Project
Tuesday, April 20th 6:00 – 7:00 pm  


Discover the exciting world of fungi! We’ll talk about the biology and ecology of fungi and tips for identifying the fungal diversity in our community. Learn how to participate in the project using photography and iNaturalist to document your observations. All participants are welcome.

Register here.

We want to hear from you!


Thank you so much for your continued support and interest in MMS membership and events! The board is committed to keeping our members and guests as safe as possible during the ongoing COVID pandemic, but is interested in exploring some potential in-person events. We would love to hear your ideas and comfort level with potential forays this season. 

Feel free to contact us directly at madison.mycological. society@gmail.com if you would like to give more in depth feedback or have any questions about this form. 

Link to survey

Foray Kits

We are really excited to share that we’ve put together foray kits! Each kit is $25. In each kit you will receive:

  • A copy of “Mushrooms in Your Pocket” from University of Iowa Press
  • A mesh bag with the MMS logo
  • A magnification loupe
  • A sharpie
  • Wax bags

If you’re interested in buying a foray kit we can ship or drop it off on your porch! Send us an email at mms-bod@googlegroups.com

Membership


Become a member of the Madison Mycological Society or RENEW your membership. Membership is only $15/year, $10/year for students, or $25 for partners/families. The fee helps the Board fund forays, programming, and a special event or two for the members. Lifetime memberships are also available for $100! You can also fiscally sponsor a membership for another human. All of our Board members volunteer their time, so your contribution goes right back into MMS. Last year we had a whopping 135 active members — up from 60 the previous year. Our goal is not only to maintain that membership, but add an additional 50 members for 2020. So please — sign up or renew now and bring along a friend for next year’s ride. It’s only going to get better!

Become a Member/Renew Here

Black Lives Matter

We, the Madison Mycological Society board of directors, unequivocally believe that Black Lives Matter and condemn police brutality in all its forms. We are committed to making our platforms and events safe for all Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC). We acknowledge Madison’s history of racial discrimination, segregation, and police violence, and support the people and organizations working to dismantle white supremacy in Madison, WI and beyond.

As described in our bylaws Section 5. CODE OF ETHICS:
(v) MMS stands against white supremacy and colonialist thought. Be mindful of assumptions and internal biases. Be respectful of the land and acknowledge the rights and sovereignty of indigenous peoples. Display or promotion of any white supremacist or nationalist ideology will not be tolerated.

(vii). MMS welcomes individuals of all races, languages, legal status, national origins, and backgrounds. Mycology is an important part of many cultures, and varied interpretations and perspectives on fungi are vital to a healthy understanding of mycology. MMS is a safe space for all people, regardless of documentation or citizenship status.

(ix) Slurs or other hate speech will not be tolerated at any MMS meetings, forays, events, or workshops, nor will any display or promotion of hate groups or associated ideologies.

Any questions regarding our bylaws can be directed to our email at madison.mycological.society@gmail.com

May 2020 Updates!

May Monthly Update

Cerioporus squamosus — From MMS member Andrew Khitsun on Mushroom observer just a few days ago!

Hello from the board!


Hello again Madison Mycofriends! It’s hard to believe it’s been an entire month. I’m sure you’re (like us) tired of this pandemic pandemonium. We hope you are staying happy and healthy and that you’ve been able to get outside (with a healthy 6-foot distance from others) and enjoy some of the nicer weather we’ve been having, especially now that that Wisconsin State Parks are open again! Have you spotted any particularly charismatic Cerioporus sp? How about a mesmerizing morel? They’re starting to pop up! Share your photos on the Facebook group!

As mentioned in our April Update, we still have no idea when our next in-person meet up will be, and we are still committed to following the guidelines put out by the state to help prevent the spread of COVID. That being said – we would still love your input on what we can do in the coming weeks and months to continue to get you excited about mycology! Let us know by emailing us at mms-bod@googlegroups.com.

Thank you!

May Monthly Meeting – Show and Tell Happy Hour!


Our (virtual) May Monthly meeting is currently scheduled for Tuesday May 19th from 6-7pm. For this month’s meeting we’d like to have a combined show and tell and happy hour. We’ll likely host this over zoom and will post a link on our social media for folks to join. Find a mushroom to show off or share a fungal story with us! Hope to see you there!

Mushroom of the Month: Dryad’s Saddle


Yes, we know May is Morel month in Wisconsin, but there haven’t yet been many sightings of those audacious ascomycetes in Dance county. So, we’ve picked another more-common May find as this mushroom of the month: Cerioporus squamosus (otherwise known as Dryad’s Saddle, Pheasant back, Watermelon mushroom, and other common names), and pictured above!

C. squamosus is a polypored, bracket-forming mushroom that smells vaguely of watermelon (or some folks say cucumber) that is generally considered edible, assuming the particular specimen isn’t too old. It typically grows on dead or dying hardwood trees and has white spores. Folks may also know this species as Polyporus squamosus (prior to that genus being split up). These mushrooms can be found in forests worldwide. If you’d like to learn more, you can visit the Wikipedia, Mushroom Expert, or Forager Chef pages about it. Oh and here’s a recipe for when you inevitably find too much while hunting for morels:

Easy Marinated Dryad’s Saddle

After trimming woody bits and slicing the mushrooms into one inch strips, soak the fungi pieces for an hour in cold water (pore side down) and drain after soak.Lay pieces pore side down in a baking dish in one layer.

Combine equal parts olive oil and vinegar (such as rice wine vinegar or sage infused apple cider vinegar) . Mix with 3 pulverized garlic cloves and add pepper and salt. Create enough marinade to cover the one layer of fungi in a baking pan.

Let marinate for eight hours.

Bake at 350 for 45 minutes flipping once or twice during the bake. The fungi is finished when the marinade caramelizes and the edges of the fungi are toasty golden. Best served with nettles and potato.

Arboretum Mycoflora Project Workshops


In-person aspects are still on pause, but keep an eye out for future details about future Community Science events!

Foray Kits

We are really excited to share that we’ve put together foray kits! Each kit is $25. In each kit you will receive:

  • A copy of “Mushrooms in Your Pocket” from University of Iowa Press
  • A mesh bag with the MMS logo
  • A magnification loupe
  • A sharpie
  • Wax bags

If you’re interested in buying a foray kit we can ship or drop it off on your porch! Send us an email at mms-bod@googlegroups.com

Membership


Become a member of the Madison Mycological Society or RENEW your membership. Membership is only $15/year, $10/year for students, or $25 for partners/families. The fee helps the Board fund forays, programming, and a special event or two for the members. Lifetime memberships are also available for $100! You can also fiscally sponsor a membership for another human. All of our Board members volunteer their time, so your contribution goes right back into MMS. Last year we had a whopping 135 active members — up from 60 the previous year. Our goal is not only to maintain that membership, but add an additional 50 members for 2020. So please — sign up or renew now and bring along a friend for next year’s ride. It’s only going to get better!

Become a Member/Renew Here

For fun!


There’s been a lot of great activity on our Facebook group, so if you have any fungal finds or projects, be sure to post there!

Corrections: This post was edited to say our next monthly meeting is on “Tuesday May 19th,” not June 19th. Apologies for the confusion.

April Monthly Meeting Follow-up

We had our first virtual Monthly Meeting on April 21st, 2020! Hawthorn McCracken presented on the basics of foraging including ethics, general guidelines, and some basic fungi.

Here’s the slides they used!

The MMS Board will be meeting again towards the beginning of May to plan out upcoming events and discuss other topics to help keep MMS going during these unprecedented times! Keep an eye out for a newsletter during the first full week of May and as always, if you have any questions or comments feel free to submit them to us through our contact form.

Stay safe and wash your hands!

🍄🍄🍄

April 2020 Updates

Sarcoscypha coccinea

Hello from the board!

Hey Madison Mycofriends! We hope you are staying happy and healthy in these strange times. I know all of us are trying to cope with this pandemic in many different ways. We hope you’ve been able to get outside for walks (with a healthy 6-foot distance from others) and enjoy some of the nicer weather we’ve been having. Have you spotted any spring mushrooms yet? Let us know! Share your photos on the Facebook group!

The truth is that, like everyone else, we have no idea when our next in-person meet up will be. We are following the guidelines put out by the state and are doing our part to help prevent the spread of COVID. That being said – we would love your input on what we can do in the coming weeks and months to continue to get you excited about mycology? Let us know by emailing us at mms-bod@googlegroups.com.

Thank you!

Book Club: Mycelium Running


We will be discussing Paul Stamets’ book, “Mycelium Running”. We have made a channel on MMS Slack for the called #book-club where members can discuss Part 1 of Mycelium Running. Discussion questions are here on our website!

Arboretum Mycoflora Project Workshop

Keep an eye out for future details about our Citizen Science events!

Foray Kits

We are really excited to share that we’ve put together foray kits! Each kit is $25. In each kit you will receive:

  • A copy of “Mushrooms in Your Pocket” from University of Iowa Press
  • A mesh bag with the MMS logo
  • A magnification loupe
  • A sharpie
  • Wax bags

If you’re interested in buying a foray kit we can ship or drop it off on your porch!

Membership

Become a member of the Madison Mycological Society or RENEW your membership. Membership is only $15/year, $10/year for students, or $25 for partners/families. The fee helps the Board fund forays, programming, and a special event or two for the members. Lifetime memberships are also available for $100! You can also fiscally sponsor a membership for another human. All of our Board members volunteer their time, so your contribution goes right back into MMS. Last year we had a whopping 135 active members — up from 60 the previous year. Our goal is not only to maintain that membership, but add an additional 50 members for 2020. So please — sign up or renew now and bring along a friend for next year’s ride. It’s only going to get better!

Become a Member/Renew Here

For fun!

Foray at Olson Oak Woods

2 pm September 9

Alden Dirks will be leading this foray. Contact him at 610-314-9573 if you get lost or need more information. Find a carpool buddy here. There is only one parking lot, directions to which can be found here. Finally, check out the DNR map of the site.