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Welcome new members. An effort to get you the most efficient and beneficial experience here has been provided by many people. In order for you to make the most of this experience you'll need to know a few things.
If you're looking for any information about hunting or identification requests here's some helpful tools and places to go.
If you do have an ID request or Hunting question please read the following and visit the above link to ask the question in the appropriate thread. You want your Identification from a trusted source. For this The Shroomery has created the TRUSTED IDENTIFIER tag. There's more information about that below.
Outline of this thread: I. Mushroom Hunting & Identification Forum rules ---- a. Common courtesy ---- b. Trusted identifiers II. Accurate mushroom descriptions III. Tips for those new to mushroom hunting IV. Helpful and important links
I. Mushroom Hunting & Identification Forum rules
1. When asking for an id on any mushroom[s], always include the information requested in Section II of this document.
2. Never give an identification if you are not sure, and never suggest that anyone eat an unidentified mushroom. Mushroom Hunting can be a dangerous hobby if you are not informed. If you suspect that what you're about to say could turn out to be wrong, very clearly disclaim it so people know you are just guessing. Never guess that it is an active species unless you are very sure. Incorrect ID's can have negative consequences.
4. Do not ask about current finds in your area. These posts have been flooding the forum for years. If you're curious about if mushrooms are growing in your area, get out there and look! Mushrooms don't read the books. Sometimes they fruit outside of season. There is no set date for any season, only vast generalizations. Your best bet is that if it's close to the season for the mushroom you are looking for and its been raining, you just might find some.
5. Do not make threads or posts discussing or reporting the weather. This includes complaining about the weather, asking if the current weather is "good for shrooms", or how long to wait after rain fall to go hunting. If it has rained within the last 1-10 days, and the temperatures are correct for the type of mushroom you're looking for, and the time of year is correct then it is certain that that the mushroom you are looking for is growing.
6. No asking when or where mushrooms, or a specific mushroom species will grow. This includes, asking what habitat a mushroom[s] can be found- or their preferred fruiting conditions. This can be very simply answered by using the "search posts" feature: http://www.shroomery.org/forums/search.php
7. No requesting or revealing specific locations. Use common sense about what might be considered a specific location. Anything that could lead someone right to the spot is not allowed - It is perfectly fine to mention places that are more than a couple square kilometers. When in doubt, do the moderators a favor and just don't say it.
8. No asking for hunting partners. The Hunting Forum is for learning, sharing, teaching and identification purposes. If you would like to request a hunting buddy, send PM's or make a topic about it in the Gathering Forum. You will gain access to the Gathering Forum after being a member for more than 60 days and when you have reached more than 100 posts. Posts announcing mushroom events and official group forays are permitted; please don't take groups of people picking psilocybin mushrooms.
9. You must follow rules that apply to all forums. Please refer to this document.
10. Start official threads with a picture. Anyone can start "official" season threads, but they need to be started with good pictures from the current year. Otherwise these threads fill up with lots of posts before the season even starts. Please include the year in the subject line.
11. No chatter about how you haven't found any shrooms yet...
12. No flaming or trolling
a. Common courtesy If you see someone violating a rule outlined in the thread (like asking for an ID without providing enough information), click the Notify Moderator button or refer them to this FAQ and do NOT flame them or even argue. It is the job of the moderators and administrators to contend with anyone who is not following the rules.
Please read about and learn how to use the Reply-to feature. It is very important to set it so people know who you are talking to.
b. Trusted identifiers You'll notice that a few members have the new Trusted Identifier tag below their avatar and post count. In our constant efforts to improve the site and the dependability of mushroom identification information for our new members, we've decided to implement this tag to identify members who have proven by their identifications to be knowledgeable and experienced identifiers, as well as teachers.
None of these members have asked to have this tag, and in fact the first they'll know of it is when they log in next time and see it. Our membership here is fluid, so many skilled but former users don't have the tag.
It doesn't mean that those without the tag are not to be listened to or respected for their advice and opinions, but rather that those with the tag have repeatedly proved to the staff here that they're competent to answer questions and give advice.
The decision on who gets these tags is up to the moderators of the mushroom hunting forum. Please don't ask for the tag for yourself or nominate others. These tags, while an honor, are not intended to be an ego trip, but simply a help to our new members who often have to wade through conflicting advice on a new hobby that that can seem overwhelming at first. If you're presented with two different identifications, and one of the members has a trusted identifier tag, his or her advice would be your preferred answer.
The moderators are in regular contact behind the scenes, and we'll be the ones to give the tags, and to take them away for cause when necessary. I'm sure we've missed a few members who should have the tags, so as time goes on, we'll be adding more to the list. We really hope this helps.
Experienced people who can be trusted with mushroom identification are (this list will grow over time):
It is important to describe your mushrooms as accurately as possible.
Along with the pictures you should try to provide the following:
* Habitat What kind of trees were nearby? What was it growing from? * Location Where in the world was it? * Gills What do they look like? Always try to take photos that show the gills of both young and mature mushrooms. * Stem Carefully dig it out of the ground so you can get a picture of the whole thing. * Spore print color (if you have time) * Scent of the mushroom. * Color that the mushroom bruises when damaged. * Anything else you might find important
For more detailed guidelines for describing your finds, please view this document.
For an explanation of mycological terms please refer to this glossary.
III. Tips for those new to mushroom hunting
There are plenty of things that someone new to the hobby needs to know before even *considering* eating a mushroom. Here are some important tips for those new to the hobby:
- Do not eat any mushroom without identifying it first! You could die of mushroom poisoning or become so sick that you'd wish you were dead.
- Make a spore print by cutting the cap from the stem and placing a cap on a sheet of aluminum foil. A light dusting of spores should drop in an hour or two. It is preferable to let the mushroom sit and release spores for up to 24 hours in order to leave a good thick print