Hygrocybe virginea?

Please try to include photos to show all parts of the fungus, eg top, stem, and gills.
Note any smells, and associated trees or plants (eg oak, birch). A spore print can be very useful.
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NickWood
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Hygrocybe virginea?

Post by NickWood » Thu Dec 07, 2017 3:57 pm

Hi,
Encouraged by the very kind and supportive responses to earlier queries, this is my first attempt at microscopy!

Rough line of six in short grass on canal towpath beside mixed hedgerow.
Cap white, waxy; at first round, becoming conical, flattening with slight umbo, up to 3cm across.
Slight beige tinge in older caps.
Gills white, widely spaced, decurrent, creating funnel shape.
Stem 6cm, white, smooth. Flesh white.
Spores white. Elliptical, inamyloid; Sample 6.87-8.07 x 4-5.19µm, suggesting four-spored basidia (first-nature.com).
Initial ID: Snowy Waxcap - Hygrocybe virginea (but the spores don't look very smooth!)
Hoping for a confirmation.
Nick
Attachments
02 Fa.JPG
02 Fb.JPG
02 Fc.JPG
02 Fd.JPG
02 Fe.jpg

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adampembs
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Re: Hygrocybe virginea?

Post by adampembs » Thu Dec 07, 2017 10:21 pm

Either H.virginea or H. russocoriacea (the latter is supposed to smell of cedar-wood)
As far as I can see, this is the only way to tell them apart.

P.S I think the "roughness" of the spores is pixelation. Note how the oil droplets (spherical objects) are also rough.. What MP is the camera?
Adam Pollard
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NickWood
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Re: Hygrocybe virginea?

Post by NickWood » Fri Dec 08, 2017 1:33 pm

Cheers for the response, Adam.
I don't remember any distinctive smell, but then it was very cold and my nose was running.
The image of the spores is 1.3M pixel (1280 x 1024), edited for size.
I've used photo-editing software I have to produce the attached image. The edges appear smoother, but I'm not sure the relief effect is a good representation of spores.
Nick
02 Fe[edit].jpg

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adampembs
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Re: Hygrocybe virginea?

Post by adampembs » Fri Dec 08, 2017 3:04 pm

I was asking about the capacity of the camera in megapixels, rather than the image you posted. For micrographs, you need at least 5MP to avoid pixelation. Some people swear by 10MP cameras but I find 5MP is enough. It's not the only criterion though, lens quality etc also matter. My problem is I think I need a new microscope. I converted it to LED and I think I've lost resolution and depth of field. I also have a scratched condenser (although people have told me its not important)

Your second image looks smoother, but if the original one lacks details, "smoothing" by software is only hiding it cosmetically and you may even lose details. It makes it look like a DIC image.
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NickWood
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Re: Hygrocybe virginea?

Post by NickWood » Fri Dec 08, 2017 3:51 pm

I don't have a camera that will fit a microscope, Adam, so I went for a digital microscope, with built-in camera and 1.3M pixel (1280 x 1024) CMOS chip. http://www.digital-microscopes.co.uk/sp ... scope.html
This now feels a big mistake because of pixel size, but I thought it had the advantages of image size, magnification, and software. Oh well, I will just have to live with it - or maybe get a camera that will fit on the microscope to take better photos? I'll contact Brunel.
Thanks, Nick

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Re: Hygrocybe virginea?

Post by adampembs » Fri Dec 08, 2017 4:38 pm

I went for the LCMOS 5MP camera from Brunel and I've been delighted with it. It should be fine with your microscope, but check with them first. There is a 0.45x tube that screws on to fit the microscope (I'm sure they can provide this)
http://www.brunelmicroscopes.co.uk/digi ... copyl.html
It might be worth asking them if any of their cameras work with the Micam software (which I prefer to the software supplied)
Cheers, Adam
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Re: Hygrocybe virginea?

Post by NickWood » Fri Dec 08, 2017 8:35 pm

Thanks, again, Adam. I talked with Helen at Brunel this afternoon and she was extremely helpful and understanding. She's going to email me a list of options within my somewhat limited budget (which will include, if necessary, replacing the microscope I bought) so I have a 5MP system suitable for detailed fungi microscopy.
I should have had the nous to get this advice first!
All the best... Nick

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