As I embarked on a photo journey in the serene surroundings of the Ouachita National Forest in Arkansas, I stumbled upon a most intriguing discovery – a mushroom exhibiting what appeared to be the symptoms of a dreaded malady, Cobweb Disease.
At first, I was under the impression that the spider-like threads enveloping the mushroom were the handiwork of arachnids. But, after delving deeper into my research, I realized that the culprit was indeed Cobweb Disease – a mold that can infect and ravage cultivated mushrooms.
The American Mushroom Institute sheds light on this perplexing ailment, describing the mold’s propensity to form a web-like growth that ensnares the fruiting bodies of infected mushrooms, ultimately leading to their browning and rotting. The mycelium of the pathogen may also undergo a change in hue, transforming into a hue of pink or red, and the cobweb-like appearance is eventually replaced by a dense mat of mycelium. In later stages, the casing surface may display dense, powdery growth of white mycelium.
As I peruse the images captured during my expedition, using my trusty Fujifilm X-T3 camera paired with a Canon EF 100-400 mm f/4.5-5.6L IS II lens, I can see that the mushroom in question has indeed succumbed to its fate, its once vibrant hues giving way to a dull brown.
Shutter Speed: 1/150
Focal Length: 400 mm
If you have a different perspective or a contrasting viewpoint, I would be ecstatic to hear from you in the comments section below.
Here are a few more photos of cool things I have came across while hiking the Ouachita National Forest: