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What are your top 3 reasons for mushroom hunting?


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  • 2 weeks later...

I started doing it as another means to learn more about nature and enhance my self-reliance. I always feel like I should be closer to nature, understand it better, and make better use of it when I can. Mushroom hunting has its own challenge/reward symbiosis like hunting animals and other plants. And yes, they're yummy and promote health.

 

I haven't sold them, but maybe I should. I recently threw away a whole wheelbarrow load of various mushrooms that I didn't eat in time and they got freezer burned. I'm going to do more dehydrating this year and less freezing. I hate seeing them go to waste after finding and cleaning them.

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Lots of reasons.  
 

It’s great exercise. 


it gives me a chance not only to be out in the woods, but introduces me to new places, both wild and tame.  I’m exploring more of our state parks, state game lands and state forests, as well as my own property.

I’ve met some very nice and very mushroom knowledgeable people at our local mushroom club.  They’ve welcomed me as one of their own.

I do like eating them, so much that I’m also experimenting with growing them, oysters, lions mane, chestnut, shiitake and hen of the woods. I’ve learned a lot doing this, and need to learn so much more. Did you know that not enough fresh air flow will cause a CO2 buildup and your lions mane won’t look exactly like it should.

It’s a great hobby.  There is more to learn than I ever can, but that won’t stop me from trying.

It makes for some interesting conversations.  I have one local person now that says he’ll let me know when the giant puffballs appear in his yard so I can get some.  Right now I’m in St Croix.  Had dinner here Wednesday night with a guy who was describing these mushrooms that come up in his garden, here in St Croix   .  What he’s describing has to be giant puffballs.

 

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For about 25 years I was primarily a pot hunter (gathering edible types). Occasionally I'd take some things home to study just out of curiosity. And learning edibles requires that one learns to recognize lots of other types of mushrooms. So, I learned to ID quite a few types of mushrooms over those 25 years. Then, in 2007 I got my first digital camera. I joined two mushroom websites... the old Mushroom Expert discussion board (which after a couple changes ultimately evolved into this website) and Mushroom Observer. Sharing/interacting online has resulted in my learning lots of new species as well as quite a bit about the science of mycology. I've become involved in efforts to sort out fungal taxonomy by contributing dried material to various projects. In 2018 I applied for a North American Mycoflora Project grant to my local club (Wyoming Valley Mushroom Club). We were awarded funding for the sequencing of 30 collections. These may be viewed on MO at   https://mushroomobserver.org/observer/observations_for_project/241   and    https://mushroomobserver.org/observer/observations_for_project/240 . I'm hoping to participate again this year (same project but now called Fungal Diversity Survey; FunDiS). 

I'd say it difficult for me to choose three reasons for being a mushroom hunter. I still enjoy searching for and collecting edibles and medicinal types. I like taking and collecting photos. I enjoy learning new things. It's satisfying to contribute to science; in several cases my collections have contributed to describing new species. And underlying all of this is my love of being outdoors in Nature... hiking, camping, fishing, observing. 

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I'll preface by saying that I'm only a few years into regular mushroom hunting... I think this will be my fifth season where I'll go out regularly (foraging plants as well). 

1. The connection with nature and our hunter-gatherer past

2. The flavor and interesting recipes that get opened up with different species of mushroom (I just picked up this book, for instance, and it has me really excited for the season)

3. The health benefits of walking, eating mushrooms, and being in nature. 

Plus, my wife is pretty into it too, at this point. She's as excited as I am for morel season. 

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My top 3 reasons are:

 

Exercise

Foraging for the table

Curiousity

 

I started as a child along side my parents. I don't recall not picking mushrooms. I've expanded my season and species variety a lot over the years but mainly I love revisiting my familiar haunts year after year and while I'm there I might as well fill a basket. I don't really eat a ton of mushrooms anymore, my 50 year old digestive system has dictated that I slow down my consumption but I still log in the hours because it's as good a reason as any to spend the day in nature.

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Thank you all! I've seen a couple posts in other groups about territory...

Do you have your favorite spots that you protect from others?

Do things get heated if you are found in or find someone in a spot you always go to?

When you go, do you go with people, or prefer to go alone?

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On 4/15/2021 at 10:19 AM, alenameadollar said:

Thank you all! I've seen a couple posts in other groups about territory...

Do you have your favorite spots that you protect from others?

Do things get heated if you are found in or find someone in a spot you always go to?

When you go, do you go with people, or prefer to go alone?

I am lucky enough to own 160 acres of which 110 acres are forest with a mix of hardwood, softwood and conifer. 90% of my mushroom hunting is there. No competition. 

When I hunt ruffed grouse on crown land (public land) , walking on grown over forest access/skidder trails, I carry an ultra-light back pack in case I come across blewits, honeys or some of the weird late season boletes in pine and larch forests.

 

I like to hunt with a friend or family on the 160. But I hunt alone in the fall...grouse and mushrooms

 

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