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Falling rain fuels fungi in Colorado

By Rachael Plath, Meteorologist, r.plath@krdo.com
Published On: Aug 28 2013 05:38:19 AM CDT

The heavy rain that has fallen over portions of Colorado recently has promoted the growth of mushrooms throughout the state, with more species popping up this year.

Heavy rain resulting from an active monsoonal pattern has resulted in more mushrooms and mushroom species popping up around the state.

Mike Essam, board member of the Pikes Peak Mycological Society and member of the Colorado Mycological Society, said the population and variety of mushrooms this year has many believing this is a “once in a 30-year” year.

He said mushrooms require a specific temperature and moisture content to fruit, and said this year has been ideal.

“With all the rain we’ve had and being in the summer with the warmer temperatures, it’s a perfect combo for a lot of those species that are under our feet to show themselves and fruit,” said Essam.

Essam said while mushrooms can be a delicious treat, it is important to be able to accurately identify the different species to ensure the mushrooms being ingested are non-toxic.

Essam said there is no rule of thumb when it comes to determining the toxicity of mushrooms, but advises that “when in doubt, throw it out.”

For more information regarding mushroom identification, click here.

If pet owners suspect their pets may have ingested mushrooms, and the pet is experiencing vomiting or diarrhea, the pet should be taken to the veterinarian immediately.

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