Cordyceps militaris shooting spores

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Steve
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Joined: Sun May 17, 2015 8:59 pm
Location: Sheffield, Yorkshire

Cordyceps militaris shooting spores

Post by Steve » Sat Jan 16, 2016 11:02 am

Hi,
Our survey at Longshaw does have a downside – we pick, inevitably, to identify. I got handed this Scarlet Caterpillarclub rather unnecessarily so I took it home to photograph it. The Nikon macro set-up crashed, so I had to put everything under the stereo microscope and use the Fukifilm. I was gob-smacked to see spores flying out, some making a parabolic turn and others flying off into the room. I did a video and managed to get some stills. There are some much better videos on You-tube e.g.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wsSCnLrbVG8
If my specimen stays OK I’ll take it back and “replant” it so it can shoot its spores where it really wants to!
Steve
Attachments
1 Cordyceps militaris.JPG
Stereo microscope image of Cordyceps militaris
Cordyceps ejecting a spore.jpg
A single spore being ejected
Cordyceps spore 4 snip.JPG
Spores arrowed
Cordyceps spore1snip.JPG
Spore arrowed
Cordyceps spore5snip.JPG
Spores arrowed

marksteer
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Posts: 314
Joined: Thu May 14, 2015 6:08 am
Location: Glamorgan VC41

Re: Cordyceps militaris shooting spores

Post by marksteer » Sun Jan 31, 2016 8:09 pm

Steve wrote:Hi,
Our survey at Longshaw does have a downside – we pick, inevitably, to identify. I got handed this Scarlet Caterpillarclub rather unnecessarily so I took it home to photograph it. The Nikon macro set-up crashed, so I had to put everything under the stereo microscope and use the Fukifilm. I was gob-smacked to see spores flying out, some making a parabolic turn and others flying off into the room. I did a video and managed to get some stills. There are some much better videos on You-tube e.g.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wsSCnLrbVG8
If my specimen stays OK I’ll take it back and “replant” it so it can shoot its spores where it really wants to!
Steve
Great video clip! I've posted this as a link on Glamorgan Fungus Group Facebook page. Glamorgan VC41 has plenty of C.militaris and still being found in January 2016. This one doesn't seem to be so picky with host as most 'Cordyceps' seem to be. In VC41 it has been found on Crane Fly (possibly Tipula paludosa) pupae. Project ongoing to try and id hosts but this can be difficult as they are often too far digested to id! I think it is Nottingham University that has research project investigating anti cancer properties. Commercial 'Cordyceps' products are widely promoted for a big range of 'therapeutic' properties - originally Ophiocordyceps (?) sinensis mainly from Tibet but a lot of raw material is now from Peru - a different genus/species I think.
Mark
'The more I know the more I realise I don't know'

Steve
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Posts: 442
Joined: Sun May 17, 2015 8:59 pm
Location: Sheffield, Yorkshire

Re: Cordyceps militaris shooting spores

Post by Steve » Tue Feb 02, 2016 8:03 am

Hi Mark,
The turf at Longshaw is often so compacted it's impossible to dissect the Cordyceps "prey". I didn't bother with my specimen, although it looked as though it might be on a leatherjacket, and I replanted it on Thursday. Here's a nice one we found last year -Ophiocordyceps ditmarii, on a wasp inside what looks like a hazelnut shell.
Cheers,
Steve
Ophiocordyceps ditmarii - Copysnip2.JPG
Ophiocordyceps ditmarii
Ophiocordyceps ditmarii under stereo microscope - Copysnip.jpg
Ophiocordyceps ditmarii

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