What You Should Know
Otidea leporina is a species of fungus in the family Pyronemataceae. It is a pale brownish or yellowish-brown species that often takes on the appearance of rabbit ears emerging from the ground; the mushrooms stand more or less erect, with the edges folded inward along a central, vertical axis.
This mushroom contains toxins that may cause serious gastric upset.
The species was first described as Peziza leporina by German botanist August Batsch in volume 1 of his 1783 Elenchus Fungorum latine et germanice and transferred to the genus Otidea by his famous compatriot, Leopold Fuckel, for publication in his journal Jahrbücher des Nassauischen Vereins für Naturkunde from 1870.
Other names: Rabbit Ears, Yellow Ear.
Otidea leporina Mushroom Identification
Saprobic, growing terrestrially in woods under hardwoods or conifers; often clustered, but occasionally growing alone or scattered; summer and fall (winter and spring in warmer areas); widely distributed in North America.
Rabbit-ear-shaped, spoon-shaped, or more or less cup-shaped, with a cleft down one side; up to 7 cm high and 4 cm across; inner surface pale brownish to yellowish-brown; outer surface similarly colored or paler, very finely hairy; stem if present whitish, small, and rudimentary; odor not distinctive or fragrant; flesh brittle.
Spores 12-14 x 6-8 µ (8-11 x 5-6 in var. minor); smooth; elliptical; with two oil droplets. Asci eight-spored; up to 170 x 12 µ. Paraphyses narrow, with hooked or curved ends.
Otidea leporina Synonyms
Helvella auricula Schaeff. (1774)
Peziza leporina Batsch (1783)
Scodellina leporina (Batsch) Gray (1821)
Scodellina auricula (Schaeff.) Seaver (1928)
Helvella leporina (Batsch) Franchi, L.Lami & M.Marchetti (1999)
Photo 1 - Author: MK-fotky (Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 2.0 Generic)