Q:

What species of mushrooms grow on cow dung?

A:

The psilocybe coprophila, popularly known as the dung-loving psilocybe, and psilocybe cubensis are the two species of mushrooms that grow individually or in clusters on cow or horse dung. Psilocybe cubensis is a large fleshy mushroom with a yellowish cap that has brown grills while psilocybe coprophila is a sticky type of mushroom with a brownish cap and brown gills.

Mushrooms are classified into categories starting from the highest level, which is the domain, to the lowest level, which is the species or the specific epithet. For example, psilocybe cubensis follows the following classification.

Domain

Eukarya: Organisms in this category have a membrane-bound nucleus and organelles. Examples include the protists, fungi, animals and plants.

Kingdom

Fungi: In this category, the organisms share a specific characteristic that concerns how they acquire nutrients; they digest food before ingesting it.

Phylum

Basidiomycota: This category is also known as club fungus, and the mushrooms display a fruiting body that resembles a club.

Class

Basidiomycetes: In this category, compatible nuclei usually fuse in a basidium, which is a structure that resembles a club, producing a diploid nucleus that undergoes meiosis.

Order

Agaricales: In this category, the underside of the fruiting body is gilled, and the gills play a very important role in reproduction.

Family

Strophariaceae: In this category, the mushrooms have brown gills.

Genus

Psilocybe: The category classifies those mushrooms with psychedelic and hallucinogenic effects.

 

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