Rare fungus found

Published: Friday 15 December 2000

a bombay Natural History Society scientist has discovered a rare species of fungus at Mumbai's Sanjay Gandhi National Park located at Borivili. Throughout the world, there is only one specimen of the fungus -- stink horn mushroom ( Clathrus delicatus ) -- at the British Museum, the uk .

On a wet monsoon day in 1996, scientist Deepak Apte happened to come across white four-centimetre long shuttlecock-shaped mushrooms growing on a rotting pile of bamboo at the park. The bamboo formed part of the refuse that had been left behind by a Mumbai film crew after shooting for a film.

Apte then consulted reputed mushroom expert Orson Miler, who heads the department of botany at the Virginia-Tech University in Virginia, usa . The identity of the mushroom was confirmed only a few weeks ago, four years after the discovery.

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