20cm in size, approximately 1 meter above the ground, discovered in a Swedish woodland. Tough to the touch, yet when bumped, it leaks liquid.

Overflowing with moisture

Rather of posting images from Waterton Lakes National Park today, I’m including three images that I took yesterday, July 23, 2015, a little closer to home.

Situated southwest of Millarville and southwest of Calgary, five of us spent the day botanizing Darryl Teskey’s land, which was presumably a forty-minute drive from the city.

Although I had never been there before, I’m glad I went since I would have missed a lot of mushrooms, including Fomitopsis pinicola (?) with its beautiful guttation droplets, as well as these and two other Red-belted polypores. Karel, thank you very much for coming by to look at them. made my day happier!

A strange behavior of certain fungus is to exude moisture beads; this is called guttation. Certain polypores, such as Fomitopsis pinicola, secrete a liquid that resembles tears so much that it may be mistaken for tears being secreted by the fungus. or even sweating. Certain animals secrete colorful droplets that have the appearance of milk, tar, or blood.

“Guttation” is the term used in botany to describe the process by which plants release excess water through leaf drops. This is so characteristic of some mushrooms that it’s a reliable way to identify them.

Fortunately, it didn’t rain until we had to start the trip home from Calgary. Numerous dark clouds reminded me of the July 22, 2015, tornado that struck Calgary and affected my hometown as well.

We walked through woodlands and across meadows, all of which were hazardous because of the many, often hardly noticeable, fallen logs. These bright orange beauties may have been hundreds or perhaps thousands, soaring or perched on every hue of bloom. Never in my life have I seen so many little Skipper butterflies.

As per usual, our objective was to find and list every organism we saw, including insects, birds, trees, grasses, fungi, and wildflowers. Following that, our leader compiles a thorough inventory of everything we find and sends it, along with any photos we may have taken, to the proprietor. We always have a terrific day and the landowner has a greater understanding of exactly what is on his property, so it’s a win-win scenario.

I am extremely behind on the photos I need to edit and email since I have been on a lot of botanizing excursions this summer, including two three-day trips to Waterton Lakes National Park!

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