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First off, only a small proportion of p. cubensis and c. cyanescens mycelium grows in the stomachs of four-legged ruminants. And only aboiut 25 or so species of the known 178 species of psilocybian mushrooms occur in cow manure.
Here is a brief statement on spore dispersal from my book on magic mushrooms in Australia and New Zealand.
CATTLE AS A POSSIBLE DISPERSAL MECHANISM FOR PSYCHOACTIVE DUNG FUNGI
One may ask the question, "how did these mushrooms arrive in Australia and New Zealand?" Well some species may be endemic, that is, they were already there naturally. Other species such as the above described dung-inhabiting mushrooms most likely appeared after the introduction of cattle on the subcontinent.
The first livestock to arrive in Australia were brought from the Cape of Good Hope in 1788, and included 2 bulls and 5 cows, along with other domesticated farm animals. By l803, the government owned approximately 1800 cattle, most of which were imported from the Cape, Calcutta, and the west coast of America. It was during this period that some of the visionary mushrooms mentioned in this field guide probably first appeared in Australia (Unsigned, 1973). According to Australian mycologist John Burton Cleland (1934), "fungi growing in cow or horse-dung and confined to such habitats, must in the case of Australia, all belong to introduced species". It is believed to have been the South African dung beetle which may have actually spread the spores. According to English mycologist Roy Watling of the Royal Botanic Gardens in Glasgow, Scotland, "it must be remembered that fungi can change substrate preferences and there are coprophilous fungi on kangaroo droppings etc." Some mycologists who have studied the "magic mushrooms" in Australia and NZ claim that the "use of P. cubensis as a recreational drug tends to confirm the belief that [some] farmers in early times [may have] added one or two basidiomes [gilled mushrooms] to a meal to liven it up [and still do] Margot & Watling, 1981)."
More than half of Australia's beef cattle can be found in the coastal areas of Queensland and New South Wales; and the 20 to 30 inch (500-750mm) rainfall belt of Queensland, New South Wales and Northern Victoria, generally provide adequate climatic environments for the growth of psilocybian mushrooms, especially after heavy rains. It has been suggested that "Psilocybe cubensis was introduced into Australia accidentally by early settlers along with their livestock." This same spore dispersal mechanism also probably applies to Copelandia cyanescens, Panaeolus subbalteatus and several additional species known to occur in or around the dung of other ruminants. This includes Psilocybe semilanceata and the non-hallucinogenic "haymaker's" mushroom Panaeolina foenisecii.
While cattle are raised in all Australian states, as well as in the central lowlands, recreational users have been known to export these psychoptic species to various areas in Australia from areas where they were collected.
In the case of New Zealand, hereafter referred to as NZ, cattle are the primary source for Copelandia cyanescens, but the "liberty cap" mushroom Psilocybe semilanceata only grows in the manured soil of four-legged ruminants and not directly from manure (Jansen, Pers. Comm., 1988).
Most P. cubensis and Copelandia species grow where spores fell on grasses and then manure fell on the grass where the spores were has fallen.
In an 8 year period on Maui, Hawaii, I only found a few times, smushrooms growing from fresh manure. The cubensis and copelandia habitat is decomposed manure which usually takes four to six weeks to decompose after the shit has hit the ground.
Re: Concerning the Propagation #77035 - 07/22/00 10:28 PM (16 years, 7 months ago)
Mjshroomer, A thousand thanks for such a timely and detailed response to my question;forgive me for not being as quick of a responder.
Those facts are welcoming and suprising; for it has been my reading,yielding misinfo, about just 'how' spores from P.cubensis and copelandia cyan. gain the initial ability to fruit, namely by utilizing the cows' stomach.
If what you and this publication say is true, then would I have much fortune in smackin' up a P.cubensis close to wet dirt then dumping some fairly fresh shit(does type really matter?) ontop, and witness some growth in the next few weeks? Of course,though,it would all be in a shaded area with occational light watering.
Any thoughts? --Pauly
[This message has been edited by COMPLEXLY_PAULY (edited July 22, 2000).]