Cruentomycena viscidocruenta | ©Ken J. Beath

Locality: Lane Cove National Park, Sydney, Australia.

The Ruby Bonnet, Cruentomycena viscidocruenta (Mycenaceae), is a small, beautiful fungus, easily recognized by its blood-red colour, glutinous to viscid pileus and stipe, and its habitat on litter. It can be found in the south-eastern Australian mainland, Tasmania, and also in New Zealand.

This species was originally named Mycena viscidocruenta by J.B. Cleland in 1924 (Grgurinovic, C.A. 2002). Moncalvo et al. (2002) analysed the DNA of a large number of fungus species, including a specimen of this species from Tasmania. The DNA analysis showed that the Tasmanian specimen did not belong within the Mycena genus because it was more closely related to Panellus stypticus than to any Mycena species. This result prompted Petersen et al. (2008) to do a more detailed study and to propose a new genus Cruentomycena, which is closely related to the Panellus genus, to accommodate this species [source].

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