Here are two photos of the same ghost fungi taken in daylight then at night. The luminescence is seen at night. On film and in digital cameras the light from the fungus is recorded as green, while our eyes will see the fungus at night as stark white. It does not actually “glow” like a light bulb. Thanks to Carol for the photos. Click on a photo to enlarge and see the luminescence.
While some say they have seen better years for fungi, there are still a lot to see. Here are some Ghost Fungi from near Mt Egerton. They would be impressive if I took these photos at night, because they glow, but that is not going to happen.
panorama of the regeneration area north of Recreation Road
Yesterday afternoon we had a quick visit into Canadian Regional Park and the common heath is looking beautiful. Don’t forget if you are interested in the latest on what is happening in our newest park come along to the meeting at the Earth Ed Centre, Olympic Ave Mt Clear at 7pm on Wednesday night. FoCC Woowookarung Regional Park forum
sunlight through the trees
Epacris impressa – Common Heath
As the fungi season approaches we look forward to where we will be led on an excursion. This year it was back to Blackwood and some of the tracks accessed from the carpark near the Garden of St Erth. Here are a few of the many fungi observed on the day. We thank Carol for this selection.
The last site on the May excursion for most of us, was the old Mt Doran Recreation Reserve, which is a BEN (Ballarat Environment Network) Reserve. While is very good condition we did notice several mature sugar gums on the back fence and someone has been removing fallen timber. A member with access to a handsaw took the opportunity to fell an environmental weed, Sallow Wattle, Acacia longifolia. Mt Doran Recreation Reserve Flora
back of fallen tree
close up of lichen
Horse Dung Fungus
inside a horse dung fungus
open grass area in the reserve
possibly part of the cricket pitch
tree that has split and fallen over
Three of us continued on to the Mt Doran Scenic Reserve and undertook some weed control on cape broom and bluebell creeper.
In Lal Lal State Forest off Flagstaff Hill Road and up a short steep track, is Mt Doran. Before you get too excited there is no view from this mount. It is quite a rocky site and a keen eye noticed a parson’s band orchid.There were also large patches of Pultenaea pedunculata so this site would be worth visiting in the spring. Mt Doran flora list
track up to Mt Doran
no view from Mt Doran
lichen on rocks
large patch of Pultenaea pedunculata
The May excursion lunch stop was beside a lovely small dam on Flagstaff Hill Road in the Lal Lal Forest. There were many orchid leaves and Emily spotted the first flowers of Tiny Greenhood Pterostylis and then a Red-tipped Tiny Greenhood. The native heath was abundant in shades of pink and we spotted the red leaves of sundews. There were quite a few fungi including ghost fungi. Flagstaff Hill Road Flora list
Strolling around the dam through the bracken
Scented Sundew leaves
Red-tipped Tiny Greenhood
The next site on the May excursion was off to the well-appointed facilities and sheltered gazebo at the Navigators Hall, for morning tea. While driving between the sites were experienced the only shower of rain for the day. After a short break and a look at the new, much publicized bird book, it was onto the , in Pound Creek Road near Yendon No 1 road.
Banksia marginata flowers
tree guards past time for being removed
large old tree with hollow
This reserve managed by Parks Victoria, has a sedgy vegetation community, listed as endangered. Over twenty years ago, the Lal Lal Catchment Landcare Group planted more indigenous trees as part of a project and we completed their project by removing the plastic bags, which were almost to the stage of strangling the trucks. Banksia marginata was flowering, a yellow robin was observed and we think we heard a Bibron’s Toadlet, described as sounding like marbles in a glass.
We also spotted a dead frog in a large puddle, so after the hearing the talk by Ray Draper about frogs and chytrid fungus on the Friday night, we made sure to disinfect our boots before we moved on. Pound Springs Reserve Flora list.
Two grass-trees grow in Canadian Regional Park. Austral Grass-tree Xanthorhoea austalis is wide spread in the park with Small Grass-tree Xanthorhoea minor in a few areas. In some areas these two species grow in close proximity.
Austral Grass-trees develop a trunk as they grow where as the Small Grass-tree stem is mainly below ground level.
||Flowering section longer than stem.
||Flowering section shorter than stem.
||Blue-green with whitish bloom.
||Trunk may branch.
||Several tufts of leaves at ground level.
Austral Grass-tree on left with skirt of dead leaves covering trunk. Small Grass-tree on right with several tufts of leaves.
The next few articles will cover several different sites of interest to Field Naturalists. The May excursion was to some areas that are less regularly visited by our group. Seven Field Nats began at Pryor’s Park, at the top end of Eureka Street in Ballarat. This reserve managed by City of Ballarat and includes an area revegetated by the local friends group, after some pines and conifers were harvested.
The other section is still pine plantation but has more indigenous understorey than you would expect to see under pines. Part of the official reserve boundary is taken up with the golf course and the management there is supposed to contribute funds to the upkeep of the reserve.
Amanita muscaria – Fly Agaric
Cherry Ballart with conifers
Pines with native understory
top of Amanita
view to Mt Warrenheip
It didn’t take long to see several types of fungi including the Fly Agaric. Years ago when this reserve was visited by the club it was possible to see glimpses of the city of Ballarat, especially if you stood on the seat but the revegetation has now increased in height blocking the view. On the way out of the reserve, Emily spotted a clump of dried seed heads of the African Weed Orchid, so if you visit in the spring take precautions not to spread this invasive species. Pryor Park flora list.