T.E.R:R.A.I.N - Taranaki Educational Resource: Research, Analysis and Information Network

Paurocotylis pila

Kingdom: Fungi
Division: Ascomycota
Class: Pezizomycetes
Order: Pezizales
Family: Pyronemataceae
Genus: Paurocotylis
Species: P. pila
Binomial name: Paurocotylis pila

Paurocotylis pila a 20mm high truffle-like fungus found in Europe and New Zealand. The genus Paurocotylis is monotypic, containing a single species. P. pila has no stipe and when the red peridium is opened the inside tissue is white.
During late summer P. pila's ascomata expands and in doing so it lifts out of the nitrogenous forest soil, it may remain half buried but in some cases, it detaches completely and lays loose on the surface looking like fallen red fruit. The scarlet peridium mimics the size and colour of the Podocarpus fruit which matures at the same time. New Zealand lacks native mammals and birds appear to be the important vector of sequestrate fungi (having internal spores).
This fungus was first mentioned in “The Botany of the Antarctic Voyage II, Flora Novae-Zealandiae 2” 188 (1855) [MB#183767]


Thanks to Wikipedia for text and information: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/