Like all mushrooms, magic mushrooms feature a cap and a stem, but there are over 50 varieties of magic mushrooms, and none of them look exactly the same.
Magic mushrooms are also called psilocybin mushrooms, and they are easily confused with mushrooms that are poisonous. Eating even a small piece of a poisonous mushroom does not feel magical. Instead, it can cause digestive issues that range from cramps and vomiting to death. For this reason, amateur mushroom hunters should never eat unidentified mushrooms.
When hunting for magic mushrooms, mushroom enthusiasts should know which season the mushrooms grow in, where they grow, their usual color, and their shapes. Mushroom pickers should also be well versed on identifying toxic mushrooms that mimic magic mushrooms in their area, and they should be aware that the consumption of magic mushrooms is illegal in most areas.
One species of magic mushroom, the gymnopilus aeruginosus, features yellow gills and orange spore prints. It comes up in the fall, and its natural habitat is rotted wood. In contrast, the panaeolus africanus, another type of magic mushroom, features grey or blackish gills and lemon-shaped spores, and it is usually found in hippo or elephant poop during the spring.