Out walking in cow country in the mountains above Pocatello, ID the other day, I came across this large fungus. Does anyone know what it is?


In the Bannock Mountains. SE Idaho. Copyright Ralph Maughan. Oct. 2009

Tagged with:
About The Author

Ralph Maughan

Dr. Ralph Maughan is professor emeritus of political science at Idaho State University. He was a Western Watersheds Project Board Member off and on for many years, and was also its President for several years. For a long time he produced Ralph Maughan's Wolf Report. He was a founder of the Greater Yellowstone Coalition. He and Jackie Johnson Maughan wrote three editions of "Hiking Idaho." He also wrote "Beyond the Tetons" and "Backpacking Wyoming's Teton and Washakie Wilderness." He created and is the administrator of The Wildlife News.

8 Responses to Cow flop? No, an unusual fungus

  1. Barb Rupers says:

    It may be Phaeolus schweinitzii on page 462 of David Aurora’s Mushrooms Demystified first edition; page 570 2nd edition.

  2. Thank you, Barb.

  3. paulWTAMU says:

    That thing is disgusting looking.

  4. Barb Rupers says:

    It may be listed in older books as Polyporous schweinitzii. A common name is dyer’s polypore and another red-brown butt rot because of the type of rot it causes in conifers. Another Arora book “All That the Rain Promises and More . . .” shows a border collie (?) with her chest dyed yellow by mushroom mush; she looks quite pleased with the results!

  5. Yes, Barb, by looking at other photos on the web, it looks like a polyporous. It wasn’t growing under a conifer, though. Some very large Douglas fir were not too far away and their roots probably extended as far as the location of this.

  6. Barb Rupers says:

    Ralph, check out the pretty picture of hair pieces dyed by the mushroom under discussion. I couldn’t find a picture of the cute collie. “Tom Volk and Dorothy Beebee modelling the latest in Phaeolus schweinitzii hairpieces!”


  7. timz says:

    Can you sautee that and put in on a steak?

  8. Save bears says:

    Anybody that could eat a steak that big, deserves to die from blocked arteries!



October 2009


‎"At some point we must draw a line across the ground of our home and our being, drive a spear into the land and say to the bulldozers, earthmovers, government and corporations, “thus far and no further.” If we do not, we shall later feel, instead of pride, the regret of Thoreau, that good but overly-bookish man, who wrote, near the end of his life, “If I repent of anything it is likely to be my good behaviour."

~ Edward Abbey