Saturday, 18 June 2016

Magic Crystal Mould?

In this damp corner of a Sussex woodland, clinging to the dead wood littering the floor, lives an organism.

It looks like this:

And under the microscope you can see it has this irregular, slightly branching form:

The surface appears powdery and almost crystalline, like one of those magic crystal trees you might have got for Christmas when you were a kid. I guess these are spore-bearing structures of some kind.

I smeared that powdery surface across a microscope slide and got a whole load of this:

Elliptical things... Spores?

In conclusion: I have no idea what this is.

(I have spent several hours trying to make it some kind of Fuligo species – a type of slime mould – but they mostly have round spores.)

For the record
Date: 18/06/16
Location: Horton Wood, Small Dole
Grid reference: TQ208127 (site centroid)

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