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By Scutter
Came across a cluster of these foul smelling fungi today. I thought they must be related to the Stinkhorn and lo and behold found this on the Kew website:

Clathrus archeri is one of the phalloid fungi (Phallales) and is related to the common stinkhorn (Phallus impudicus), a well-known woodland fungus in Britain. It similarly produces a sticky spore-bearing tissue designed to attract flies which are the agents of spore dispersal. Like other phalloids, C. archeri accumulates manganese in the egg-stage, apparently important chemically in producing the sugars and odorous substances found in the fertile tissue.

The devil's fingers fungi was first described as Lysurus archeri by the Rev. M.J. Berkeley in 1860, and later referred to the genus Anthurus due to its free arms rather than cage-like form. It was then placed in the genus Clathrus by Dring (1980), a genus which includes the so-called cage fungi, many of them tropical in distribution or native to the southern hemisphere.

Clathrus archeri is one of several phalloids which have been introduced to Britain, and it was first recorded in Britain from Cornwall in 1946. It has since spread in southern England, and is now locally frequent, especially favouring wood-chip mulch.

Clathrus archeri is native to Australia and New Zealand, and has been introduced elsewhere. It is now present in parts of Europe, where it was first recorded in 1914 in France, apparently introduced with military supplies at the start of the First World War. It is also found in North America, especially in California, where it was first reported in 1982 and considered to have been introduced with exotic plants.

Tags: Fungi New forest Flowers and plants Close-up and macro Clathrus archeri Octopus stinkhorn Devils finger

Voters: Terry L, Alan_Baseley, Holmewood and 8 more

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Terry L 19 609 5 England
24 Oct 2013 6:31PM
A fine detailed image of this strange fungi.

Paintman Plus
16 1.5k 180 United Kingdom
24 Oct 2013 9:29PM
This is an extraordinary find, well photographed too.

adrian_w 15 3.8k 4 England
24 Oct 2013 10:17PM
a most unusual fungus.
Greyheron 20 282 7 England
25 Oct 2013 9:17PM
Very special indeed...


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