Coral Tooth Fungus

(Hericium coralloides)

               
Conservation Status

IUCN Red List

not yet assessed

Coral Tooth Fungus

NatureServe

NNR - Unranked

Minnesota

not listed

Occurrence

Widespread; fairly common in Minnesota

Season

Late summer and fall

Habitat/Hosts

Deciduous forests and woodlands. Dead fallen logs and stumps of hardwoods

    Photo by Margot Avey
 
Identification

There are sixteen species of Hericium, four of which occur in North America, three in Minnesota. Coral Tooth Fungus (Hericium coralloides) is by far the most common of the three. It is fairly common in northeastern United States and in Minnesota. It is found in late summer and fall in deciduous woodlands and forests. It obtains its nutrients from dead wood (saprobic). It grows alone or in small groups on fallen logs, branches, and dead stumps of hardwoods.

When young, the fruiting body is knobby and toothless, and it cannot be distinguished from other Hericium species. When mature, it is a loose, openly branched, irregularly-shaped, 3 to 13 ¾ wide, 2 to 6¾ high cluster of delicate branches rising from a tough, repeatedly branched base. It is white when fresh, becoming creamy-white to buff or yellowish-tan with age. The branches are themselves again intricately branched and have rows of evenly-spaced spines, like the teeth of a comb.

The spines are the spore-producing structures of this fungus, corresponding to the gills on many mushrooms (Agaricales). They are to long and hang downward. Sometimes a small tuft of spines at the tip of a branch may have spines up to 1 long.

The flesh is white. It is edible when young and soft, but the spines become brittle with age.

The spore print is white.

 
Similar
Species

Bear’s Head Tooth (Hericium americanum) is a tight cluster of many branches with tufts, not rows, of 3 16 to 1¼ long spines. It is uncommon in Minnesota.

Lion’s Mane (Hericium erinaceus) is an unbranched, cushion-shaped mass of closely packed spines. The spines are ¾ to 2 long or longer. It is rare in Minnesota.

 
Distribution Distribution Map  

Sources: 4, 24, 26, 29, 30, 77.

 
Comments

Taxonomy
This species was formerly classified as Hericium laciniatum, then Hericium ramosum. Older texts that used the latter name for this species used the name Hericium coralloides for what is now called Hericium americanum.

 
Taxonomy

Division:

Basidiomycota (club fungi)

 

Subdivision:

Agaricomycotina (jelly fungi, yeasts, and mushrooms)

 

Class:

Agaricomycetes (mushroom-forming fungi)

 

No Rank:

Agaricomycetes incertae sedis

 

Order:

Russulales

 

Family:

Hericiaceae

 
Synonyms

 

 
Common
Names

Coral Tooth Fungus

Coral Tooth

Coral Tooth Fungus

 

 

 

 

 

 

Glossary

Saprobic

Obtaining nutrients from non-living organic matter, such as decaying plant or animal matter.

       
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Carrie Olson
       
  Coral Tooth Fungus   Coral Tooth Fungus
       
Jill Jacobson
       
  Coral Tooth Fungus   Coral Tooth Fungus
       
Margot Avey
       
  Coral Tooth Fungus    
       
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Other Videos
 
  Foraging for Hericium Coralloides "Comb Tooth mushroom"
330 MaNiaC
 
   
 
About

Published on Oct 9, 2016

Join me as I forage for Hericium Coralloides also known as Comb Tooth mushroom here in north central MN. Late september is the perfect time of year to look for these delicious choice edible mushrooms. They mainly grow on downed or dying maple trees.

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  The Comb Tooth Mushroom
Gary Cremese
 
   
 
About

Published on Sep 15, 2012

I found this rare mushroom while walking the west branch of the Farmington River in Peoples State Forest northwestern Connecticut. I show how to harvest and prepare this mushroom for pickling. I also provide insight to the potential dangers of eating wild mushrooms, along with a detailed account of the medicinal properties of the Comb Tooth Mushroom, the latin name; Hericium Coralloides.

   
       
  Hericium coralloides mushroom hunting
Scott Button
 
   
 
About

Published on Sep 25, 2015

Hericium coralloides, mushroom hunting

   
       
  Comb Tooth Mushroom - Magic Fungi
MyBackyardBirding
 
   
 
About

Published on Jan 4, 2014

The Comb Tooth Mushroom (Hericium coralloides) - A Magic Mushroom if ever there was one - and closely related to the Bear's Head Tooth Mushroom see:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aqtxN3ypy1w

I came upon both of these large specimens on a hike in the Great Smoky Mountains last August and I am now a dedicated mushroom watcher - I had never seen such amazing mushrooms. Who knew they could be so fascinating. These are arguably the most stunning fungi one is likely to encounter and they are both highly prized for recipes and medicinal properties. It is said this mushroom tastes like Lobster and is good used in a Chowder! It is also one of the least likely group of mushrooms to be mistakenly identified as they are so unique. The Bear's Head Tooth Mushroom has larger "teeth" that are more like stalactites hanging from a cave roof while the Comb Tooth Mushroom has much smaller "teeth" and looks more like a piece of brain coral. These specimen were at or near peak condition and of course I left it for others to enjoy! http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hericium

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  Harvesting & Dehydrating the Comb Tooth Mushroom
Chris & Kathy
 
   
 
About

Published on Sep 5, 2016

Harvesting the Comb Tooth mushroom

   
       

 

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Carrie Olson
9/15/2019

Location: Park Rapids

Coral Tooth Fungus


Jill Jacobson
9/8/2019

Location: Becker County

Coral Tooth Fungus


Margot Avey
9/3/2017

Location: Tettegouche State Park, northern Minnesota

Coral Tooth Fungus


     
     
 
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