|Slime Mold Sporangia, Stemonitis sp.|
Yesterday I posted this photo with the question, "what is this?". I also gave the clue that this thing is "creepy", and it would make a good dessert for a slug.
I say "creepy" because slime mold's plasmodium does creep around in an amoeba-like manner on the surface of decaying wood like this pine stump. The plasmodium engulfs bacteria and other food particles as it creeps around. The slime molds don't form hyphae like fungi do.
I said it would make a good dessert for a slug because apparently slugs like to eat slime molds. Here is a link to a paper on the Feeding activities of slugs on Myxomycetes and macrofungi. Slime mold is another way of saying myxomycetes.
Anyway, we had a very wet spring and the slime molds were busy running around on the stumps and even the picnic table in our back yard. Now that summer is in full swing, it has been very dry. Because the slime molds like moist environments they must have decided to form spores and get "outa' here". Here is a picture of a young clump of Stemonitis sporangia.
|Mature Stemonitis Sporangia|
if you mix...oh, my seats with plenty of rain, at least the slugs will feast.