A close look

This morning I looked at a couple of the specimens I collected yesterday morning. You may find an ick factor but it is really fascinating actually.

I have not figures out what skull this belonged to, but let me know if you recognize it.

In one of the crevices, we found these eggs!

This one still seems to be occupied. It is just over 2mm long.

This one was empty. Some might have escaped already, but I have not found any of them. Gasp!

You can see the lid where it got out on the top right. It is a really pretty egg. I have put the eggs in a container to see if I get something. Stay tuned.

Here is some of the ick part. This fungus is on cow dung. Michael Kuo of the MushroomExpert.com says “You know that your obsession with fungi has become a true problem when you find yourself on hands and knees excitedly examining” on dung. I think everything has become an obsession for me LOL.

Separated from the dung. While researching to see if I could come up with a name for it, I found one called the common dung cup in the genus of Peziza. I even found one site that talked about a species on zebra dung in the same genus. There are tons of species around the world so I’m not going any further with this one.

Sections under the dissecting scope. There are many colors of fungi that can be found on dung.

I was really surprised to see these purplish spores. I had never seen that color of spores before. It was exciting! I can tell that it is a fungus because it has hyphae. It is an ascomycete type fungus because its spores are in an ascus. Asci are the sacks holding the spores. A lot of mushrooms’ spores belong to the basidiomycetes. Difference Between Ascocarp and Basidiocarp explains it much better than me.

It was pretty darn cool! I found more on my dung sample, but that will have to wait for another post.

Keep looking!


  1. My skull book seems to me to indicate that a coyote has a longer snout. I am actually leaning to a dog.

  2. In College Station, when I worked at a USDA entomology lab, they used to bring fresh cow patties in for us to count horn fly eggs. At least you don’t have to deal with the fresh factor. LOL

    1. Actually I have read that you don’t want to collect it when it is fresh if you are looking for fungus. That makes it nice for the fungus collectors LOL.

    1. Hi Jan! Nice to hear from you! I have a little skull book that I used for keying most of the common species but it did not help in this case. I tried to make it a bobcat or raccoon, but neither worked out LOL. I was thinking it might be a dog.

  3. Those are so cool! Purple spores!! Shiny eggs! I know a forensic entomology person if you need help with the identification once it hatches…

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