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.
Botanists recently determined that some fungi species use pressurized gas to propel their spores at speeds up to 70 mph within microseconds. This one is estimated to hold 450 million spores, according to the BBC.
The fruiting body is from the species Fomitiporia ellipsoidea, a perennial fungus. It forms a long, brown shape up to 35.5 feet long, 2.8 feet wide and about 2 inches thick. Parts of it broke off into shards, as depicted in the photo above.
Scientists have not removed the entire thing, but density tests suggest it weighs at least half a ton, according to the BBC. It was discovered by accident, according to Professor Yu-Cheng Dai of the herbarium of biology at the Chinese Academy of Sciences in Shenyang. The researchers were in the field studying wood-decaying fungi when they came across it, BBC says.
"We were not specifically looking for this fungus; we did not know the fungus can grow so huge," Dai said.
Not the largest in the world! The largest is living under Oregon. It's about 3.5 miles across. They haven't been able to weigh it though, as it's under ground and still alive and growing.
I think the key is fruiting body, as several entities are much larger than this is. Though I would be more interested in the deep ocean life than a fungus. This is a slow popsi day :(.
I wonder if this man’s hands and fingers are ok the next day or does he suddenly have a fungas rash? I am sure he is confident of what he is handling, but he also has that thing close to his face breathing in the spores. I like to see this guy wearing rubber gloves and a face mask. If this his career, the odds of him catching go up considerable.
"....Botanists recently determined that some fungi species use pressurized gas to propel their spores at speeds up to 70 mph within microseconds. This one is estimated to hold 450 million spores...."
I can't believe nobody has asked the most important question.... What's it taste like? Like a truffle? Is it edible?
i was totally thinking that prolly tastes like dirt
Michigan gained international attention when a giant fungus "Armillaria bulbosa" was found in a forest nearby. Both Nature and the New York Times covered the story. This fungus weighed 100 tons. Scientists believe that it is the oldest living & largest organism on earth. It covers 30 acres. But the Orgeon one was found later, and may be bigger,
Keep on growing you have a way to go.....
I think some people are confusing the largest fruit body with the largest fungi, this is the largest fruit body ever discovered, completely smashing the last record, a specimen of Rigidiporus ulmarius, a mere 5m in diameter and weighing over 300kg located in Kew Gardens, London. I bet there's bigger out there though so get searching all you budding mycologists, and remember FUNGI RULE O.K.
Looks like he found where china has been storing its rad waste
After this mans girlfriend saw what he holds during his work day, do you think they hold hands and cuddle at night?
Whoa, that's weird alright. How'd it grow so large? And to think it's only 20 years old.