Yesterdays foray for the Glamorgan Fungi Group was held at Gethin Wood, not far from Merthyr Tydfil. (O.S. SO 055 035).
Whilst we found lots of fungi there was one in particular that was very exciting. The amazing Cordyceps militaris or Scarlet Caterpillarclub.
The fungus attacks all sorts of insects but this particular cordyceps lives on the dead and buried pupae of caterpillars and moths. It transforms the internal body of the host into mycelium whilst developing and when ready, breaks through the casing. Its fruitbody can reach 5cms long, is slightly bulbous at the tip and covered in tiny scarlet dots.