Auriscalpium vulgare, the pinecone mushroom, is a species of fungus in
the family Auriscalpiaceae. It was first described in 1753 by Carl
Linnaeus, who included it as a member of the tooth fungi genus Hydnum.
British mycologist Samuel Frederick Gray recognized its uniqueness in
1821 and created the genus Auriscalpium for it. It is widely distributed
in Europe, Central America, North America, and temperate Asia. The
small, spoon-shaped mushrooms grow on conifer litter or on conifer cones
in soil. The dark brown cap is covered with fine brown hairs, and
reaches a diameter of up to 2 cm (0.8 in). The underside of the cap
has an array of tiny tooth-shaped protrusions up to 3 mm long. The dark
brown, hairy stem, up to 55 mm (2.2 in) long and 2 mm thick, attaches
to one edge of the cap. High levels of humidity are essential for
optimum mushroom development, while excesses of either light or darkness
inhibit growth. A. vulgare is generally too tough to be considered
edible, but some historical literature says it used to be consumed in
France and Italy.
Today’s selected anniversaries:
The first officially recorded baseball game using modern rules
developed by Alexander Cartwright was played in Hoboken, New Jersey,
Emperor Maximilian I of Mexico was executed by firing squad in
The Patent Cooperation Treaty, an international law treaty, was
signed, providing a unified procedure for filing patent applications to
Basque separatist group ETA detonated a car bomb at the
Hipercor shopping centre in Barcelona, killing 21 people and injuring 45
Mass riots involving over 10,000 people and 10,000 police
officers broke out in Shishou, China, over the dubious circumstances
surrounding the death of a local chef.
Wiktionary’s word of the day:
(ophthalmology) An instrument used to test for color blindness by
measuring quantitative and qualitative anomalies in color perception.
Wikiquote quote of the day:
Weak logic, inconsistencies and alienation from the people are
common features of authoritarianism. The relentless attempts of
totalitarian regimes to prevent free thought and new ideas and the
persistent assertion of their own lightness bring on them an
intellectual stasis which they project on to the nation at large.
Intimidation and propaganda work in a duet of oppression, while the
people, lapped in fear and distrust, learn to dissemble and to keep
silent. And all the time the desire grows for a system which will lift
them from the position of “rice-eating robots” to the status of human
beings who can think and speak freely and hold their heads high in the
security of their rights.
–Aung San Suu Kyi
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