What You Should Know
Lepiota felina generally resembles several other small and medium-sized Lepiotas for which microscopic examination of the structure of the spores and epidermis is important to determine the species. It has a broad convex cap with a very dark brown center, concentric areas of small brown spots, and scattered scales arranged radially around the edges. The gills are white to faintly pinkish, the cap flesh is white and non-staining, and the odor is like cedar wood or somewhat unpleasant and rubbery. The stem is whitish to pale brownish above the ring and pinkish brown to grayish brown with zones of brownish squamules below. The ring is cuff-shaped and usually decorated with brown scales. The spores are oval to oblong, and the cap-shaped cuticle consists of a cluster of long erect elements, produced by rod-shaped cells.
Widespread and fairly common in acidic areas, mainly in conifer forests, throughout most of Europe, and is found also in many other parts of the world including North America.
This mushroom is poisonous and tastes mild. Its smell can be described as earthy and putrid.
Other names: Cat Dapperling.
Lepiota felina Mushroom Identification
Initially hemispherical, becoming convex and sometimes almost flat with a slight umbo; white with a dark brown or black center surrounded by concentric rings of relatively large (compared with other dapperlings of similar cap size) dark-brown scales. Cap diameter at maturity ranges from 1.5 to 3cm.
The free, crowded gills are white or cream, darkening with age.
Creamy white; base slightly swollen; the persistent ring is creamy white on top and brown beneath. 2.5 to 4cm long and 2 to 4mm in diameter.
Ellipsoidal to ovoid, smooth, 6.5-8 x 3.5-4μm; dextrinoid.
Odor and Taste
Odor is earthy; the taste is not significant (and tasting dapperlings is inadvisable).
Saprobic, solitary or in small groups in coniferous forests and plantations.
July to October.
Lepiota felina Look-Alikes
Has a bright orange or red-brown ring low down on the stem.
Is typically larger with paler scales and has an unpleasant odor.
Lepiota felina Taxonomy and Etymology
Lepiota felina (Gender: Feminine) was scientifically described by P.A. Karsten and effectively published in 1879. The name Lepiota felina is of type combination. Lepiota felina has the status legitimate.
The scientific classification of Lepiota felina is Fungi, Dikarya, Basidiomycota, Agaricomycotina, Agaricomycetes, Agaricomycetidae, Agaricales, Agaricaceae, Lepiota.
Lepiota, the genus name, comes from Greek words Lepis-, meaning scale, and -ot, meaning ear. Scaly ear fungus is an interpretation, therefore. Scales on a convex (vaguely ear-shaped) cap are characteristic of fungi in this genus, as also are free gills and a stem ring.
The specific epithet felina means cat-like.
Lepiota felina Synonyms
Agaricus felinus Pers., 1801
Agaricus clypeolarius var. felinus (Pers.) Fr., 1821
Lepiota clypeolaria var. felina (Pers.) Gillet, 1874
Mastocephalus felinus (Pers.) O.Kuntze (1891)
Lepiota felina f. lilacina Bon (1981)
Lepiota felina var. lilacina Bon (1993)
Lepiota felina var. subrobusta Bon (1993)
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