Pluteus cervinus

Deer Mushroom

Order Agaricales, Family Pluteaceae

CAP BROWNISH

Cap:  3-12 cm wide; convex becoming broadly convex to flat; smooth or with grooves running down cap, slightly slimy when moist; light to dark brown

GILLS FREE, WHITE THEN SALMON-PINK

Gills; free; close, broad; white, becoming pinkish then salmon-pink

STALK WITH NO RING

Stalk:  5-13 cm long, .5-2 cm thick; solid; smooth or with brownish or blackish longitudinal fibers; no veil

SPORE PRINT SALMON TO BROWNISH PINK

Spores 6-8.5 x 4.5-6 µm, elliptical, smooth

ON WOOD – STUMPS AND CHIPS; ON GROUND ON BURIED WOOD

EDIBLE

Lookalikes:

Entoloma sp. -- attached gills, not on wood

Volvariella - same spore print & free gills, but has volva (cup) at stem base

YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE TO KNOW....

Ask your average mycophobic neighbor, "What color are gills?" The probable answer: pink. As urban mycophiles who spend more time mushroom hunting than fishing, we know that gills are less often pink and mostly gray, green, brown, black, or some combination of those colors. 

The deer mushroom is an interesting find for its pink gills and spores. (Note that younger specimens have whitish gills. To make a spore print, place a mature cap gill-side down on white paper overnight.) It's also a graceful wood-inhabiting mushroom that some people like to eat. We've found it in the city on both stumps and wood chips.


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