© A and O Ceska

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Danny’s DNA Discoveries – Hodophilus of the PNW
by Danny Miller


They are small, tan coloured terrestrial mushrooms with decurrent gills and notable for their somewhat waxy appearance and strong mothball odor.

Most species in the Clavariaceae family are clubs or corals, as this is a basal family of the Agaricales from before gills were fully established as the dominant look for the order. Hodophilus is one of the oldest lineages in the order to produce a gilled mushroom, and more interestingly, one of the first to produce a gilled mushroom that grows on the ground instead of on wood (the other is Aphroditeola). They certainly do have an almost waxy look to them as though they were the prototype for other gilled mushrooms.

abundant common uncommon rare - colour codes match my Pictorial Key and are my opinions and probably reflect my bias of living in W WA. Rare species may be locally common in certain places at certain times.


Hodophilus paupertinus CA (=Camarophyllopsis paupertina) - drab yellow-tan-grey decurrent somewhat waxy-looking mushroom smells strongly of mothballs. We have the CA type sequence and matching DNA from BC and WA.

Hodophilus 'phaeoxanthus PNW01' - this species found twice near Victoria, BC also has a strong mothball odor but darker yellow colouration like H. phaeoxanthus. It is >4% different in ITS from that EU species so likely needs its own name.

Hodophilus PNW02 - this species, known from 1 OR collection, has some very dark almost purple-black, colours!

Hodophilus paupertinus and 'phaeoxanthus PNW01'  © A and O Ceska,     H. PNW02 © Connor Dooley


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