Albatrellus ovinus: The Ultimate Mushroom Guide
About The Albatrellus ovinus Mushroom
Albatrellus ovinus is a large, dense mushroom being rich in cell wall material. This creamy to pale grey-brown polypore looks like an agaric or a hedgehog mushroom from above, but it has minute pores on the underside. It stains lemon or greenish-yellow, particularly on the pores. The skin of the convex cap often cracks with age. It has a sturdy stem and very firm, mild to slightly bitter white flesh. The mushroom grows under conifers, mycorrhizal with spruce on moss-covered soil.
Other names: Sheep Polypore, Forest Lamb, Ningyoutakemodoki (Japanese).
Albatrellus ovinus Identification
Mycorrhizal with conifers in a wide variety of ecosystems (under Engelmann spruce and subalpine fir in the Rocky Mountains, under Norway spruce and other conifers in the Appalachians, and under various firs, pines, and spruces in northern and northeastern regions); usually growing gregariously (sometimes in dense clusters); summer and fall (also overwinter in coastal California, where manzanita is reported, along with conifers, as a host); widely distributed in North America.
4-20 cm across; usually circular in outline but sometimes irregular; loosely convex, flat, or shallowly depressed in age; rarely fused; dry; smooth at first, usually becoming conspicuously cracked, with pale to yellowish flesh exposed in the cracks; whitish or buff when young, but usually soon tan.
Descending the stem; white to creamy or yellow with age; sometimes bruising faintly greenish or yellowish; pores very small (2-5 per mm) and circular except near the stem in older specimens, where they can become larger and more angular (or even nearly tooth-like); tubes to 4 mm deep.
3-10 cm long; 1-4 cm wide; central or a little off-center; whitish to tan; smooth or very finely velvety.
Whitish or yellowish.
KOH instantly dirty golden yellow on flesh.
Not typically developing reddish colors on any surfaces; flesh drying yellowish to olive.
Spores 4-5 x 2.5-3.5 µ; smooth; subglobose or broadly elliptical; inamyloid; walls fairly thick. Gloeoplerous hyphae present, staining in phloxine. Clamp connections absent.
Albatrellus subrubescens microscopically, the spores of A. subrubescens are amyloid, while the ones of A. ovinus are not.
Albatrellus ovinus Medicinal Properties
Albatrellus ovinus Taxonomy & Etymology
In 1762, when Jacob Christian Schaeffer described this unusual polypore, he gave it the scientific binomial name Boletus ovinus, which establishes its basionym. It was an American mycologist, William Alphonso Murrill (1869 - 1957), who in 1903 transferred this species to its current genus, whereupon its currently-accepted scientific name Albatrellus ovinus was established.
Synonyms of Albatrellus ovinus include Boletus ovinus Schaeff., Boletus albidus Pers., Albatrellus albidus (Pers.) Gray, and Scutiger ovinus Murrill.
Albatrellus, the genus name, is not so easy to see through. Alba- means white, of course, while -ellus indicates something much smaller than the norm, and in this instance, it must be the pores. So 'white fungi with very small pores' is the best I can come up with.
The specific epithet ovinus comes from the - Classical Latin noun ovis, meaning a sheep.
Albatrellus ovinus profile
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