© A and O Ceska

Back to Main Menu

Danny’s DNA Discoveries – Glomeromycota and Zygomycota of the PNW
by Danny Miller


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.

Mucoromycota - Glomeromycetes and Endogonomycetes

Contrary to popular belief, at least a few fairly large fruitbodies can be made outside of the 'basidio' and 'asco' phyla, most notably in the Mucoromycota. While it's true that there are many other phyla in kingdom fungi, and they mostly produce microscopic "molds", there are some 'large' mushrooms to be found. You can recognize them by giant spores that are usually between 50 and 300 microns instead of the usual 10 microns or so found in 'basidios' and 'ascos'.

The Endogonomycetes were formerly known as the Zygote fungi.

Endogone pisiformis (Endogonomycetes) - Little yellow blobs, about 1-5 mm across, on soil, wood, moss or polypores, that are not jelly like, nor slimy (like young slime molds) nor powdery (like older slime molds). (Slime molds are not covered here because they are not in kingdom fungi).

We need European sequences and local sequences to verify that we have the actual European species here, and not a lookalike.


Endogone pisiformis © A and O Ceska


Most other species in these phyla that you are likely to come across are false truffles without much of an outer skin (you can see right through to the spongy interior). If anything, the outer layer is a bunch of cottony threads holding the thing together. Gautieria are similar 'basidio' false truffles with exteriors that can wear away, but they are not uniformly sponge-like inside, they have a false columella (primitive stem) inside. And of course, their spores are way smaller.

Endogone spp. in the Endogonomycetes often exude a milky latex when cut fresh.

Glomus spp. in the Glomeromycetes do not.

Endogone lactiflua © Matt Trappe, an example of a false truffle with thin cottony exterior that exudes a latex.

Back to Main Menu