Two new species of mushroom documented in the Iberian Peninsula

Feb 26, 2013
This shows Hydnum vesterholtii. Credit: UPV/EHU

In collaboration with the Royal Botanic Gardens of Madrid and the Slovenian Forestry Institute, researchers in the Basque Country have documented two new species of Hydnum, commonly known as ox tongue mushrooms, as part of their study published in the 'Mycologia' journal. This genus is known because many of its fungi are edible.

Spanish researchers have headed the discovery of two mushroom species belonging to the Hydnum , a type of commonly used in cooking.

"During our study we discovered two new species: Hydnum ovoideisporum and Hydnum vesterholtii, which belong to a genus commonly known as 'ox tongue'. Although many of this species' mushrooms are consumed in many parts of the world, paradoxically there have been few recent serious studies that attempt to clarify what species exist and the differences between them," as explained to SINC by Ibai Olariaga Ibarguren, lead researcher of the study conducted from the University of the Basque Country.

According to the experts, differentiating this genus is a very complicated task since there is much resemblance between species and they have rather similar microscopic characteristics. "This is one of the reasons why many authors of studies have believed that there are few Hydnum species with different variables," outlines the scientist.

Nonetheless, the scarcity of molecular studies carried out on these indicates that their is very high. Olariaga himself has been performing a review of this genus in the for years. One day he discovered that there were two species that were distinguishable from the rest because of their specific ecology and the fact that they had ovoid basidiospores, instead of the blastospores in the majority of species.

"The molecular study that our work provides confirmed that the species detected at the time using classical morphology-based taxonomy belonged to two genetically different ," highlights the researcher.

This shows Hydnum ovoideisporum. Credit: UPV/EHU

Recognising collected species

Since they cannot be cultivated, species belonging to the Hydnum genus are collected from natural ecosystems in large quantities. They are not poisonous, which is one of the reasons why great emphasis has not been placed on differentiating them.

Nonetheless, very little is known about how widespread they are, their ecology and whether those being collected are an endangered species or under threat of extinction or, on the contrary, a very common species.

"This type of study allows us to delve deeper into these aspects and gain precise information that can be interesting from an applied point of view, since it is necessary to know for example if one or a few species produce certain secondary metabolites or molecules of industrial interest," explains Olariaga.

It is probable that the collectors have consumed these two new species since Hydnum mushrooms are phylogenetically related to Cantharellus (chanterelles) and Clavulina (coral fungi) and they all have edible species. "It would be highly unlikely that these two species documented were not actually edible."

Explore further: 'Red effect' sparks interest in female monkeys

More information: Ibai Olariaga, Tine Grebenc, Isabel Salcedo, María P. Martín. "Two new species of Hydnum with ovoid basidiospores: H. ovoideisporum and H. Vesterholtii" Mycologia, 104(6):1443-55, December 2012. doi:10.3852/11-378

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Seven new luminescent mushroom species discovered

Oct 05, 2009

Seven new glow-in-the-dark mushroom species have been discovered, increasing the number of known luminescent fungi species from 64 to 71. Reported today in the journal Mycologia, the new finds include two ne ...

New Danish fungal species discovered

Sep 04, 2012

A new fungal species, called Hebelomagriseopruinatum, has now officially been included in the list of species. The fungus, whose name can be translated into 'the grey-dewy tear leaf', was discovered on Zea ...

Recommended for you

'Red effect' sparks interest in female monkeys

Oct 17, 2014

Recent studies showed that the color red tends increase our attraction toward others, feelings of jealousy, and even reaction times. Now, new research shows that female monkeys also respond to the color red, ...

Roads negatively affect frogs and toads, study finds

Oct 17, 2014

The development of roads has a significant negative and pervasive effect on frog and toad populations, according to a new study conducted by a team of researchers that included undergraduate students and ...

All in a flap: Seychelles fears foreign bird invader

Oct 17, 2014

It was just a feather: but in the tropical paradise of the Seychelles, the discovery of parakeet plumage has put environmentalists in a flutter, with a foreign invading bird threatening the national parrot.

Amphibians being wiped out by emerging viruses

Oct 16, 2014

Scientists tracing the real-time impact of viruses in the wild have found that entire amphibian communities are being killed off by closely related viruses introduced to mountainous areas of northern Spain.

User comments : 0