Candlesnuff fungus

Mushroom

Appears like small white shoots on rotting wood In fact, black at the base, then grey, becoming white and most visible towards the tip – supposedly similar to the wick of a candle which is no longer burning.

Candle snuff

Dank and fragrant milkcap

Dark and fragrant milkcap

Lactarius mammosus is another mushroom without a common English name. The title here is a rough translation of its German name: Dunkler Duftmilchling.

It is a milkcap, one of a group of species which exudes a fluid which can look like milk if it is damaged.
This species also smells of coconut.

Black headed gulls

Black headed gull

Black-headed gulls are the type of gull most often found inland.

Black headed gull

As these pictures show, the name can be misleading.

Black headed gull

For most of the year, their heads are white. The black heads are only on the adult birds during the breeding seasons. Even then, the colour is actually a dark chocolate brown which looks black in most lights.

These gulls had landed on the rail around the boating lake in West Park as they kept one beady eye on the people feeding the birds.

Deceiver

Deceiver

Laccaria laccata gets its common name because it is extremely variable in appearance, even for a fungus.

The deception is that it can supposedly appear that several different varieties of toadstool have been found, when in fact there is only the one.

Fly agaric 2

Fly agaric

The white flecks or warts on the cap of this toadstool are the remnants of a veil which surrounds the mushroom as it pushes up through the soil.

Rain will wash them off, leaving a pure red cap, as here. The yellow marking near the apex is where something has begun to nibble at the fungus.

Further rain, especially heavy rain, will also begin to leach away the bright red colour, leaving oranges or yellows. Such can be seen in this rather bedraggled specimen.

Fly agaric

Cow parsley seeds

Cow parslip seeds

Most of the seeds of this plant have now dried and been scattered.

Other nearby hogweeds are still showing flowers, although they are getting rather straggly

Orange peel fungus

Orange peel fungus

In shape, it looks like a tiny, squashed cup, without any visible stem.
Grows on open soil under trees.

These are new specimens. Very soon, they become paler on the outer surface, and more and more resemble fragments of discarded orange peel to a casual glance – a process which has gone a little further along in the specimens below.

Orange peel fungus

Fly agaric

Fly agaric

The classic toadstool of fairy story illustrators.

Don’t try at home to test out its hallucinogenic properties: the toxic chemicals which cause this effect are as likely to give some very unpleasant, and just possibly fatal, symptoms.

In Britain, this mushroom is always found close to birch trees.

Oak Apple

Oak Apple

Not an apple, but a mutant leaf forming the cradle for the larva of a gall wasp.

The hole is where the larva eventually came out.

Snowy wax cap

Snowy wax cap

The snowy wax cap, Hygrocybe nivea, is bright white in colour.

Despite this, it can be hard to spot lurking in short grass in places like sportsfields or lawns.