Thursday, August 7, 2008

What Is This?

I know what these are!

It's this that I am curious about, This white stuff was about five inches across, and felt quite thick and spongy.
Is it a fungus of some kind?

5 comments:

Gaye from the Hunter said...

hi Sherryl,

there is every possibility it is a slime mould in its creeping stage.

I have two blog entries on slime moulds with imformation and pictures.

http://hvbackyard.blogspot.com/2007/06/22-secretive-slime-moulds.html

and

http://hvbackyard.blogspot.com/2007/12/41-more-slime-moulds.html

Cheers
Gaye

Sherryl said...

Thanks, Gaye. I'd not really heard of slime moulds before. Loved all your photos. Fascinating stuff!

Mosura said...

Fascinating stuff.

Denis Wilson said...

Hi Sherryl
I think Gaye is on the money, but if it was spongy, it might possibly be an old, degraded Polypore. They poke out of trees - like a bracket fungus - but are relatively soft. Actually they resemble a piece of Styrofoam in texture. Eventually they get rotten, and degraded, and fall to the ground. But then, they are sitting ON the ground, not with leaves and bark embedded in them, as appears to be the case with yours.

If it was had grass, twigs and leaves embedded in it, then Gaye's suggestion would be spot on. Slime Moulds grow up and around any obstacle. Very short lived though. A few days maximum, before they change appearance or "disappear". They are their own life forms, really. Gaye has lots of interesting links about them. They can take on many different shapes and forms.
A great learning opportunity, they are.
Cheers
Denis

Sherryl said...

Denis - it was spongy, so you could be right. I think the bits imbedded in it were probably from it being on the ground for a while. A friend showed me a range of slime moulds in a reference book (which were amazing) but none of them looked quite like this did.

 
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