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Tuesday, 4 December 2012

Conocybe cyanopus

Conocybe cyanopus is a member of the genus Conocybe which contains the medicinal compound psilocybin. It is formerly known as Pholiotina cyanopoda, Conocybe cyanopoda, and Galerula cyanopus. Description Conocybe cyanopus is a small saprotrophic mushroom with a conic to broadly convex cap which is smooth and colored ocher to cinnamon brown. It is usually less than 25 mm across and the margin is striate, often with fibrous remnants of the partial veil. The gills are adnate and close, colored cinnamon brown with whitish edges near the margin, darkening in age. The spores are cinnamon brown, smooth and ellipsoid with a germ pore, measuring 8 x 5 micrometers. The stem is smooth and fragile, whitish at the bottom and brownish at the top, 2-4 cm long, 1 to 1.5 mm thick, and is equal width for most of the length, often swelling at the base. The stem lacks an annulus (ring) and the base usually stains blue. The cap color lightens when it dries, turning a tan color. Like some other grassland species such as Psilocybe semilanceata, Psilocybe mexicana and Psilocybe tampanensis, Conocybe cyanopus may form sclerotia, a dormant form of the organism, which affords it some protection from wildfires and other natural disasters. Distribution and habitat Conocybe cyanopus grows in lawns, fields, grassy areas, but is rare. It is known to occur in cool climates of North America and Europe, but is probably more widely distributed. It can be found in British Columbia, Colorado, New York, Oregon, Washington),Finland, Germany and Norway. Edibility Hallucinogenic, containing psilocin, psilocybin, and baeocystin. This mushroom contains between 0.5 to 1.0 percent psilocybin. Most mycologists recommend against eating this mushroom because it is easy to mistake for poisonous species. Potency Fruit bodies have been found to contain anywhere from 0.33–1.01% psilocybin, 0–0.007% psilocin, and 0.12–0.20% baeocystin.