What You Should Know
Lepiota brunneoincarnata is found throughout Europe and the temperate regions of Asia, extending as far east as China. It is highly toxic and can be commonly found growing in grassy areas, including fields, parks, and gardens. Often mistaken for edible mushrooms, L. brunneoincarnata has a distinctive appearance, featuring a brown scaled cap, pinkish-brown stem, and white gills.
It is a toxic mushroom that can be deadly if ingested, containing alpha-amanitin. It has caused fatal poisoning in Spain in 2002, a poisoning outbreak in Iran in 2018, and the deaths of four people in Tunisia in 2010. Symptoms begin with gastrointestinal issues, such as nausea and vomiting, and later liver damage. Eating 100 g of the mushroom can lead to severe liver damage.
Lepiota brunneoincarnata is often mistaken for the fairy ring champignon, which is found in similar grassy areas but has a different appearance. Ingestion of Lepiota brunneoincarnata can be detected in the urine 36 to 48 hours after ingestion, and medical management should include specific liver-protective measures such as intravenous silibinin, penicillin G, and n-acetylcysteine, as well as general supportive measures like rehydration.
Other names: Deadly Dapperling, German (Fleischbrauner Schirmling), Netherlands (Gegordelde parasolzwam).
Lepiota brunneoincarnata Mushroom Identification
The cap ranges from 0.98 to 2.36 inches (2.5 to 6 cm) in width. It starts as a hemispherical shape and becomes broadly convex, sometimes almost flat, with a slight bump. The pinkish-brown surface becomes woolly and breaks into fine scales that form irregularly concentric rings, which are paler and more widely spaced towards the edge. The flesh is white.
The free, crowded gills are creamy white, and the cheilocystidia (gill-edge cystidia) are cylindrical or narrowly clavate.
Creamy white with a pink flush, 0.98 to 1.97 inches (2.5 to 5 cm) long and 5 to 9 mm diameter; flesh white. The upper half is smooth while the lower stem, below an indistinct woolly ring, is decorated with dark-brown fibrous scales.
The flesh is white but turns slightly pink when broken.
Ellipsoidal; smooth, 8.9-10.2 x 4.8-5.5Ојm; dextrinoid.
This mushroom typically grows in small groups as a saprobe in broadleaf and mixed woodlands, and occasionally in sand-dune grasslands from July to November. It is typically found in the warmer regions of Europe, primarily in the south, but has also been documented in Britain and Germany. In Asia, it has been observed in Turkey, Israel, Pakistan, Iran, and eastern China, with the fruiting bodies appearing in parks, gardens, roadsides, and hedges.
Lepiota brunneoincarnata Look-Alikes
Similar but is more pinkish and has smaller spores.
It is distinguished by its bright orange or red-brown ring on the lower stem.
It is typically larger than L. brunneoincarnata and has brownish scales.
Lepiota brunneoincarnata Taxonomy and Etymology
Swiss mycologists Robert Hippolyte Chodat (1865-1934) and Charles-Édouard Martin (1847-1937) were the first to describe this mushroom scientifically in 1889, giving it the name Lepiota brunneoincarnata, which remains its widely-accepted scientific name.
The genus name is derived from the Greek words "Lepis-" meaning scale, and "-ot" meaning ear, thus "scaly ear fungus" is an interpretation. The scales on a convex cap, resembling an ear, are a distinguishing feature of fungi in this genus, as are the free gills and stem ring.
The specific epithet "brunneoincarnata" refers to the brownish-pink coloring of the cap, literally meaning "flesh-colored but with a brown tinge."
Lepiota brunneoincarnata Synonyms and Varietes
Lepiota barlae Patouillard (1905), Bulletin de la Société mycologique de France, 21(3), p. 117
Lepiota barlaeana Patouillard (1909) , Comptes rendus du Congrès des sociétés savantes de Paris et des départements: Section des sciences, 1908, p. 249
Lepiota helveola ss. Barla (1889), Les champignons des Alpes Maritimes, p. 26, tab. 16 bis, fig. 1-9
Lepiota patouillardii Saccardo & Trotter (1912), Sylloge fungorum omnium hucusque cognitorum, 21, p. 17
Photo 1 - Author: Strobilomyces (Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 4.0 International)
Photo 2 - Author: Strobilomyces (Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 2.5 Generic, 2.0 Generic and 1.0 Generic)