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Howdy from Northwest Arkansas! So out hunting and I stumbled upon this guy. Base of an ash in a creek bed in an area with a few true morel patches. I left it for later. A friend from Indiana called it a "peckerhead" but I've not seen but one other half-free morels down here. 

photostudio_1585033179095.jpg

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I think this is a half-free morel; Morchella punctipes is the eastern North American species. Two things you may check to possibly differentiate from Verpa: 1. The the stalk of Verpa usually has at least some white pithy stuffing inside, often clinging to the inner wall. Morchella species have stalk completely hollow with the chamber extending into the cap; 2. the cap of Verpa attaches to the stalk only at the very apex of the cap. A half-free morel gets its name from the cap being connected to the stalk about halfway down (the length of the cap). 

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As usual, Dave is spot on.  Here is a pic of a few Verpa split in half, with the pithy stuffing still intact.  As the mushroom ages, the pith starts to become less noticeable; dissolves, collapses, disappears...

Chris

IMG_20160409_111352.jpg

Here's a pic of a Verpa bohemica cap.

IMG_20160407_125702027 smaller.jpg

Edited by The Mushroom Whisperer
Fixed stupid auto correct...

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