An Australian Government Initiative [logo]
Australian Fungi - information about Australia's flora
Home > Gardens | CANBR > Plant Information > Plant Groups > Fungi

Further information

You’ll find many specific references scattered through the various sections of this website. Some of those references are also listed here, but most of the ones given here are of more general interest. This is far short of a comprehensive list, and there is a bias towards information relevant to Australia, but these provide a start and each will lead you to further sources of information.

The sources of further information are divided into several categories:

Books - simple identification guides
Books - other
CD-ROMs
Websites - general information
Websites - photographs
Websites - old books
Websites - paintings
Australasian associations

Books - simple identification guides

These books contain identification keys to some common genera of Australian macrofungi and are aimed at people with no fungal knowledge. The identification keys rely largely on naked-eye features. This works fairly well with some groups (such as mushrooms and stinkhorns) where there are many visible features that can be used to recognize genera. In various other groups (such as polypores) naked eye features are of limited use, as are the identification keys.

Many fungal genera are very widespread and in many cases there is a particular "look" to a genus. This means that overseas field guides can be useful in Australia, to help you get a feel for various genera. Just be careful about using overseas guides to identify a species within a genus.

Despite these warnings, the Australian and overseas books are useful and you will learn a lot from them. Just use them with care. A good field guide would warn you of its own limitations.

* The asterisked books deal only with mushrooms, the others include non-mushrooms as well.

Aberdeen, JEC. Introduction to the Mushrooms, Toadstools and Larger Fungi of Queensland. Queensland Naturalists Club, Brisbane, 1979

Black-and-white drawings of over 100 species and a small number of colour paintings and photographs.

* Cole, M, Fuhrer, B & Holland, A. A Field Guide to the Common Genera of Gilled Fungi of Australia (rev. ed.). Inkata Press, Melbourne & Sydney, 1984

This contains a fold-out identification chart, a booklet and eight sheets of colour photographs.

Hood, I. An introduction to fungi on wood in Queensland. University of New England School of Environmental Sciences and Natural Resources Management, Armidale, 2003.

For each species there is a brief description of the fruiting body. There are also b/w drawings of the fruiting body (with size indicated in the caption) and microscopic features (all at a uniform scale of 1mm=1 micron). There are also four pages of colour photos and copious references.

Shepherd, CJ & Totterdall, CJ. Mushrooms and Toadstools of Australia. Inkata Press, Melbourne & Sydney, 1988

A short introductory section on fungi in general is followed by the identification keys and species descriptions. There are numerous colour photographs, though a number of these are misidentified. You can find corrections here [http://fungimap.rbg.vic.gov.au/fni/fni10.html] on the Fungimap website.

Tait, R. (ed.) Fungi out west: some fungi of southern inland Queensland. Chinchilla Field Naturalists Club, Chinchilla, 2007

This small handbook contains photos and paintings of a variety of fungi from an area generally ignored by field guides. Though there are some mistakes in the names given to species, this is still a useful book if used with care. You can find a review in Newsletter number 33 produced by Fungimap.

* Willis, JH. Victorian Toadstools and Mushrooms (3rd. ed.). Field Naturalists Club of Victoria, Melbourne, 1963

The bulk of the book deals with the mushrooms, with a few pages of discussion of some non-mushroom fungi. The identification key is confined to the gilled fungi. There are many black-and-white illustrations and some colour paintings.

* Wood, A. Australian Mushrooms and Toadstools: How to identify them (rev. ed.). New South Wales University Press, Sydney, 1990

There are two identification keys to the common genera. One uses macroscopic features, the other a combination of macroscopic and microscopic features. The small size makes it easy to fit into a shirt pocket.

Young AM. Common Australian Fungi (rev. ed.). New South Wales University Press, Sydney, 2000

There’s a brief introduction to some aspects of fungal ecology and structure, followed by the identification key and descriptions of over 200 species. There are colour photographs or small watercolour paintings of about half the species.

Books - other

Ahmadjian, V and Paracer, S. Symbiosis: an Introduction to Biological Associations. University Press of New England, 1986

An excellent introduction to numerous symbiotic associations, with some chapters on the associations formed by fungi.

Ainsworth, GC. Introduction to the history of mycology. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, 1976

The title is self-descriptive. The book assumes knowledge of basic fungal concepts and terminology.

Australian Biological Resources Study. Fungi of Australia - Vols. 1A & 1B. CSIRO, Canberra, 1996

A good coverage of many aspects of fungal study - written from an Australian perspective. Given the diversity of topics, some chapters can be read by a very wide audience while others demand considerable biological knowledge. There are copious references in each chapter.

Bell, A. Dung Fungi: an illustrated guide to coprophilous fungi in New Zealand. Victoria University Press, Wellington, New Zealand, 1983

The title says it all - and many of the species listed in this book are also found in Australia. While the detailed descriptions may appeal only to specialists, the numerous colour drawings will give anyone an excellent overview of the types of fungi to be found on dung. After flipping through this book, you'll never again look at a wombat dropping or a cowpat in the same way.

Bell, A. An illustrated guide to the coprophilous Ascomycetes of Australia. CBS, Utrecht, 2005. (= CBS Biodiversity Series No. 3)

Once again the title says it all. The book contains numerous identification keys, a good bibliography and almost a hundred pages of excellent colour or black-and-white drawings of fruiting bodies, spores and asci.

Benjamin, DR. Mushrooms: Poisons and Panaceas, WH Freeman & Company, New York, 1995.

Benjamin, a professional pathologist and amateur mycologist, has written a very readable account of the poisonous fungi and their poisons. While some sections require some medical knowledge (or a nearby medical dictionary) the bulk of this book can be read by non-medical people. Highly recommended for anyone who has to deal with cases of mushroom poisoning or is curious about poisonous mushrooms.

Bougher, N & Syme, K. Fungi of Southern Australia, University of Western Australia Press, Perth, 1998

About a quarter of the book consists of text by Neale Bougher, explaining the basics of fungal structure, ecology, classification and examination techniques. This is followed by information about 125 species, with a double-page spread for each. On one page Neale Bougher has provided detailed descriptions of the macroscopic and microscopic features (including drawings of the latter) and on the other there's a superb painting of the species by Katie Syme. At the end there's a detailed list of references.

Breitenbach, J & Kränzlin, F. Fungi of Switzerland: Volume 1, Ascomycetes. Verlag Mykologia, Lucerne, 1984 and Fungi of Switzerland: Volume 2, Non-gilled fungi. Verlag Mykologia, Lucerne, 1986

If you can find these books anywhere, flip through the pictures. You'll see several hundred examples of ascomycetes, polypores, corticioid fungi, puffballs, coral fungi, jelly fungi - the types that are greatly under-represented in many field guides or picture books. Many of the species in these two Swiss books occur in Australia and the books give brief descriptions of the important macroscopic and microscopic features of each species.

Cooke, RC. Fungi, man and his environment. Longman, London, 1977

A good introduction to the interactions of fungi with humans and the rest of the natural world.

Dashorst, GRM & Jessop, JP. Plants of the Adelaide Hills. Kangaroo Press, Adelaide, 1990

This is mostly non-fungal, but plates iv to x feature small paintings of about 90 species of fungi

Dix, NJ & Webster, J. Fungal Ecology. Chapman & Hall, London, 1995

A survey of many aspects of fungal ecology. Some fungal knowledge would be useful before you read this book.

Findlay, WPK. Fungi: Folklore, Fiction and Fact. Richmond Publishing Company. London, 1982

The title says it all.

Fuhrer, B. A Field Companion to Australian Fungi (rev. ed.). Bloomings Books, Melbourne, 2001

Fuhrer, B & Robinson, R. Rainforest fungi of Tasmania and south-east Australia. CSIRO, Melbourne, 1992

While of limited use in identification, these two books contain superb colour photographs of numerous fungi. These books give an excellent introduction to the variety and beauty to be found in Australian fungi.

Grgurinovic, C. Larger Fungi of South Australia. Botanic Gardens of Adelaide & The Flora and Fauna of South Australia Handbooks Committee, Adelaide, 1997

The text is strictly for the specialist, but it’s worth a look by anybody for the reproductions of fungal paintings by several Australian artists. About a hundred species are illustrated by paintings or photos.

Griffiths, K. A Field Guide to the Larger Fungi of the Darling Scarp & South West of Western Australia. Privately published, Perth, 1985

Brief descriptions of 110 species, accompanied by small but good watercolour paintings.

Kendrick, B. The Fifth Kingdom (3rd. ed.) Mycologue Publications, Sidney, British Columbia, Canada, 2001

A good introduction to all aspects of fungal study - also available as a CD-ROM

Macdonald, R & Westerman, J. A Field Guide to Fungi of South-eastern Australia. Nelson, Melbourne, 1979

Photographs and brief descriptions of 56 species.

May, TW & Farrer, SL (eds.). Australian Systematic Botany, Volume 14, Number 3, June 2001

A special issue of this journal, devoted to "Biodiversity and Biogeography of Australasian Fungi". Technical papers, but worth perusing - and there are numerous further references.

McCann, IR. Australian Fungi Illustrated. Macdown Productions, Melbourne, 2003

Several hundred colour photographs of fungi, with virtually no text. Each caption contains name, month when photograph was taken and habitat. The habitat is often very general, e.g. "forest" or "forest and woodland".

Robinson, R. Fungi of the South-West Forests. Department of Conservation and Land Management, Perth, 2003.

Brief descriptions of naked-eye features and excellent photographs of representatives from 40 genera of fungi found in the south-west of Western Australia.

Short, PS (ed). History of systematic botany in Australasia. Australian Systematic Botany Society, Melbourne, 1990

This book is largely non-fungal, but it contains three very useful chapters about the history of the study of Australian macro and micro fungi.
"Aspects of Australian mycology: 1800-1900" by IG Parberry & WH Sheather
"History of systematic mycology in Australia" by IG Pascoe
"History of the Study of Australian Agaricales" by TW May

Williams, JE & Woinarski, JCZ (eds) Eucalypt ecology: individuals to ecosystems, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, 1997

This book has a chapter ("Fungal diversity and ecology in eucalypt ecosystems" by TW May & JA Simpson) about the macro and micro fungi that are found associated with eucalypts in Australia.

CD-ROMs

Fungimap. Compendium of Fungimap Target Species, Version 1.1 (CD-ROM), Fungimap, Melbourne, Australia, 2001.

This CD contains numerous photographs of the bulk of the Fungimap [http://fungimap.rbg.vic.gov.au/] target species, as well as Fungimap newsletters and some general information.

Young, AM. 101 Forest Fungi of Eastern Australia, CD-ROM, Version 1.0, Knowledge Books & Software, Brighton, Queensland and ABRS, Canberra, 2001.

This CD contains some general fungal information and descriptions and photos of 101 species of fungi, as well as an interactive identification key. Given the very small number of species that are included, you will come across many common (and even quite distinctive) forest species that are not on this CD. You should also be aware that there are numerous missing dashes in size descriptions. For example, "36 cm" given as a cap size when "3-6 cm" is what’s meant.

Websites - general information

http://bugs.bio.usyd.edu.au/learning/resources/Mycology/courses.shtml

This site, created by staff at the University of Sydney, is in effect a course on all aspects of the fungal world. It deals with both macro and micro fungi and is very informative. Ideal for anybody who wants to learn about fungi in some depth.

fungimap sceen http://fungimap.rbg.vic.gov.au/

This is the Fungimap website, which features photos of the target species as well as general fungal information. You can also find all issues of the Fungimap Newsletter here.

http://www.environment.gov.au/biodiversity/abrs/publications/fungi/poster-classification.html

Part of the website of the Australian Biological Resources Study, with an explanation of the classification of the macro and micro fungi.

http://www.fungibank.csiro.au/

To quote from its homepage, this website "...provides information on the benefits of incorporating native fungi into revegetation and advice on sourcing and propagating native fungi".

http://botit.botany.wisc.edu/toms_fungi/

This site, created by Tom Volk of the University of Wisconsin, contains numerous fungal facts and stories.

Websites - photographs

There are numerous websites featuring photographs of fungi. Here’s a small selection of websites. The aim is to list sites that have a reasonable number of named images and give a good geographical spread.

http://www.in2.dk/fungi/imageintroTxt.htm - This is a good starting point. The site has links to many (but by no means all) of the photos in the following sites.

Australasia

http://fungimap.rbg.vic.gov.au/- This is the Fungimap website, with photographs illustrating about 100 species of Australian fungi that are easy to identify with the naked eye.

http://www.hiddenforest.co.nz/fungi/index.htm- New Zealand: photographs as well as various fungal facts.

Asia

http://www.mycena.sfsu.edu/pages/Indonesian_Page/Title_page.html - Indonesia (mostly mushrooms)

Pacific

http://www.mycena.sfsu.edu/pages/hawaiian/Agaricales.html - Hawaiian Islands.

Africa

http://www.mycokey.com/BurkinaFaso.html - Burkina Faso. Once you’re in the first screen, click on The funga to get started.

Central America, Caribbean

http://facultyweb.cortland.edu/NeoTropicalFungi/ - Neotropical basidiomycetes

http://www.nybg.org/bsci/res/hall/ - Costa Rica

South America

http://www.mycokey.com/Ecuador.html - Ecuador

 

Europe

http://www.bioimages.org.uk/ - This site contains images of numerous organisms (not just the fungi) that are found in the United Kingdom. The page listed is the introductory page and from there you can search for a specific organism or (via Shortcuts) follow a stepwise, hierarchical route to the species level. There are numerous fungal pictures - both of the fruiting bodies and microscopic structures, so this is a very informative site. It will be easy to use for someone looking for a specific species, but may be a bit more challenging for someone with limited fungal knowledge.

http://users.skynet.be/jjw.myco.mons/ - Belgium

http://mykologie.unas.cz/texty/latin.htm#a - Czech republic

http://www.grzyby.pl/findex.htm- Poland. There are also links to many other photo sites

http://sienet.luontonetti.com/en/index.htm - Finland & Sweden. To get started, click on Welcome to The Kingdom of Fungi

North America

http://www.mykoweb.com/CAF/species_index.html- California - with links to further photos for each species

http://www.pfc.cfs.nrcan.gc.ca/cgi-bin/matchmaker/matchmaker.asp - The Pacific Northwest of the USA and nearby Canada

http://botit.botany.wisc.edu/images/332/- Numerous images from Tom Volk of the University of Wisconsin.

http://www.uoguelph.ca/~gbarron/ - over 600 images and numerous stories!

 

Websites - old books

On this page I list the websites on which I have found old botanical literature relevant to a study of the history of mycology. Many such books feature paintings or drawings, ranging from the realistic to the somewhat fanciful. There are other relevant sites and more may well arise. However, I do not aim for a comprehensive guide to all such sites but simply note a few sources via which you can get access to a good number of old fungal books.

http://bibdigital.rjb.csic.es/ing/index.php- The Digital Library of the Real Jardíin Botánico in Madrid

http://www.botanicus.org/About.aspx - The Botanicus Digital Library of the Missouri Botanical Garden.

The library staff at those two botanic gardens have already scanned many old botanical works and have an active scanning program that should see a good number of books added each year.

http://194.203.77.76/LibriFungorum/ - The Libri Fungorum project gives access to electronic copies of various books and journals.

http://gallica.bnf.fr/ - Gallica is the online library of the Bibliothèque Nationale de France.

http://www.philological.bham.ac.uk/bibliography/index.htm - An index of online non-classical Latin texts, including various early herbals and other botanical publications.

http://www.biodiversitylibrary.org/ - Click on the word Fungi in the body of the opening page.

Websites - paintings

Before the camera, accurate paintings were indispensable for illustrating the fungal world and, even now, good paintings are still very useful. Here’s a selection of websites featuring fungal paintings. The sites are listed roughly in chronological order of the original paintings.

http://www.mykolibri.de

This website is based on the mycological library of Christian Volbracht and features images from many old mycological books, from the 16th century onward. You can choose English, French or German versions. To get started, once you've chosen your language, just click on library, bibliotheque or bibliothek along the top bar.

http://www.nrm.se/theswedishmuseumofnaturalhistory/researchandcollections/botany/cryptogamicbotany/virtualexhibitions/fungusplates.1791.html

This site, created by staff of the Swedish Museum of Natural History, shows paintings commissioned by Elias Fries (1794-1878), often called the Father of Mycology. (Also accessible via the following Swedish language link, which also gives the Swedish common names for the illustrated fungi. http://www.nrm.se/forskningochsamlingar/vaxter/kryptogambotanik/virtuellautstallningar/eliasfriessvampplanscher.254.html.)

http://www2.kb.dk/udstillinger/floradanica/fdonline/

This Danish site featuring fungal images from Flora Danica, published between 1761 and 1874. The Royal Copenhagen porcelain manufacturers have incorporated fungi from the Flora Danica in dinnerware: http://www.royalcopenhagen.com/Press-room/Photo-Archive/Dinnerware/Flora-Danica-Fungi.aspx

http://www.botanischestaatssammlung.de/DatabaseClients/BSMschiefcoll/DiversityCollection_BSMschiefcoll_Find.cfm

The paintings are held by the Botanische Staatssammlung München, Department of Mycology. For each species there are paintings of the fruiting bodies and there are also drawings of microscopic features for a number of species. The paintings were done between 1941 and 1963. Once you have the small picture, click on it to enlarge it. The artist was Konrad Schieferdecker (1902-1965), about whom more information is available here: http://www.botanischestaatssammlung.de/DatabaseClients/BSMschiefcoll/About.cfm

http://www.botanischestaatssammlung.de/DatabaseClients/BSMwohlfcoll/DiversityCollection_BSMwohlfcoll_Find.cfm

The paintings are held by the Botanische Staatssammlung München, Department of Mycology. The paintings feature the non-mushroom basidiomycetes, a group which features rarely in illustrated fungal books. Once you have the small picture, click on it to enlarge it. The artist was Fritz Wohlfarth (1906-2005), about whom more information is available here: http://www.botanischestaatssammlung.de/DatabaseClients/BSMwohlfcoll/About.cfm

http://www.nhm.uio.no/botanisk/sopp/utstilling/

Paintings by two Norwegian artists. These were displayed during the 7th International Mycological Congress, held in Oslo in August 2002

Fungal paintings have appeared on postage stamps from many countries.

In 1981 Australia Post released a set of four stamps featuring paintings by Celia Rosser.

Cortinarius cinnabarinus - http://www.anbg.gov.au/stamps/stamp.785.html
Coprinus comatus -http://www.anbg.gov.au/stamps/stamp.786.html
Armillaria luteobubalina - http://www.anbg.gov.au/stamps/stamp.787.html
Cortinarius austrovenetus - http://www.anbg.gov.au/stamps/stamp.788.html

http://www.brlsi.org/Fungi.htm

Strictly speaking, this is an interloper - since it features models rather than paintings! But it’s interesting.

 

Australasian associations

Australasian Mycological Society
http://www.australasianmycology.com/

Australasian Plant Pathology Society
http://www.australasianplantpathologysociety.org.au/

Fungal network of New Zealand
http://www.funnz.org.nz/default.htm

Fungimap
http://www.rbg.vic.gov.au/fungimap/home

New South Wales

Sydney Fungal Studies Group
http://www.sydneyfungalstudies.org.au/

Queensland

Queensland Mycological Society
http://www.qms.asn.au/

South Australia

Adelaide Fungal Studies Group
Contact: Pam Catcheside, Ph: (08) 8222 9379
Email: Catcheside.Pam@saugov.sa.gov.au

Victoria

Field Naturalists Club of Victoria - Fungi Group
http://www.fncv.org.au/

Western Australia

Perth Bushland Fungi
http://www.fungiperth.org.au/

WA Naturalists’ Club - Fungi Group
http://www.wanats.iinet.net.au/