of Wild Mushrooms of North America
I was born in Russia, so my roots are in a culture that has been hunting and using wild mushrooms for a few hundred years. In countries like Japan, China and Russia, early interest in wild mushrooms resulted in standardized common names long before the mycologists came along and invented the scientific names so it would be easier for them to do their work. When a child grows up in Russia he or she is introduced to mushroom hunting as soon as they can walk. They start learning the common names of the mushrooms from their parents. In these countries there are two distinct groups of people, those that are primarily interested in edible mushrooms, and those that are interested in studying them, the mycologist.
In this country most people that become interested in wild mushrooms have to learn on their own. This usually involves buying and reading mushroom books and guides. Maybe joining a mushroom club. Anyway you go, the stress is on scientific names. The problem with that is that the scientific names have been undergoing a tremendous revision in recent years because the scientists are looking at all the mushrooms with the new DNA tools. This gets to be kind of complicated for a beginner. I felt that maybe I can make things a bit easier for me and other beginners by making up a page where I would compile, and update, the common names used in North America. I gathered common names from mushroom guides I own. If you know common names of mushrooms that are different from those listed here, would you please share them with me, and others? I am interested in adding English names used in North America.
The List so far. (97kb PDF)
Please help. You may use the link below to e-mail me the common names used in your area of North America.
On 3/30/07 I received e-mail with a link to
an Excel document that is supposed to be the list of common names of mushrooms
of North America as compiled by the NAMA committee in charge of coming up with
the recommended names. If I got this list earlier it would have saved me a
lot of work. I like my list better since it is more compact. I plan
to scan this document and add common names to my list as I find those that are
missing in my list. The Excel document is a bit over 1MB in size so I made
a PDF copy. Below are links to both.
Excel document - 1076KB
PDF document - 271KB