The giant fungus was found living under a fallen tree. The entire fungus weighs between 800-1,100 pounds.
A half-ton, 33-foot-long fungal fruiting body was discovered growing under a felled tree in China, researchers said. It's the most massive fruiting body — equivalent to a mushroom, in other fungal species — ever discovered.
The giant fungus is estimated to be 20 years old, according to the BBC. It was feeding on rotting wood, which allowed it to reach its prodigious size.
Like this huge fruiting body, mushrooms are actually the spore-bearing fruit of fungus, growing above soil or on top of its food source. The spores produce new generations of fungi.
By Nicholas Money, as told to Flora LichtmanPosted 06.06.2011 at 10:53 am 3 Comments
We know of at least 70,000 species of fungi, but we don’t know how most of them get their spores airborne. That’s what we’re trying to find out. Fungi are spectacularly mobile, especially when they’re launching spores, and that is a tremendous biomechanical feat. For microscopic things, air represents a significant obstacle.