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Do you have any morels at all?

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Do you have any morels at all?

Post by zenlizard on Sat Mar 20, 2010 12:30 pm

It's getting close to that time of year. I haven't found any yet but I'm starting to look around Central Arkansas. In a couple of weeks they should be appearing in the Ozarks. So far I've had my best luck looking around old large ash trees. I read somewhere else that they also like sycamore and cottonwood. Guess I'll have to look in some bottom land areas as well.

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Re: Do you have any morels at all?

Post by east_stingray on Sat Mar 20, 2010 2:55 pm

I was a big mushroom hunter back when I lived in IL, and it was an excellent place for it. I've yet to find any since moving to Arkansas, but I'll admit that I haven't really tried very hard. I also typically found them around ash trees, and usually dead or dying ones at that.

I have found puffballs down here, which are YUMMY.

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Re: Do you have any morels at all?

Post by BuffTrek on Mon Mar 22, 2010 10:28 pm

somebody actually brought up finding morels to me the other day...
it's something that I've always been interested in but never had the right guidance - I always figured it was one of those things that somebody should show you as to not get poisonous mixed up with non-poisonous...
Said guy told me there were only two types with the bad type being hollow - any truth to this?
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Re: Do you have any morels at all?

Post by east_stingray on Tue Mar 23, 2010 7:32 pm

I don't know off the top of my head about hollow vs. solid, but there really isn't much that looks like a morel. There are some "imitators", but most of them are also edible for most people.

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Re: Do you have any morels at all?

Post by BuffTrek on Wed Mar 24, 2010 11:36 am

i had a feeling this guy was blowing smoke...
i suppose I need to just go buy a book and try identifying them myself...
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Re: Do you have any morels at all?

Post by SmokeHouse on Wed Mar 24, 2010 4:44 pm

Now you have me interested, I'll be looking for them.
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Re: Do you have any morels at all?

Post by east_stingray on Wed Mar 24, 2010 7:29 pm

Because you asked, and because sites like this should be full of quality information, I pulled out and dusted off my mushroom book.

1. Black Morel (Morchella elata)- completely hollow cap, ridges and pits arranged in vertical rows. Highly edible. Cook before eating.

2. Common morel (Morchella vulgaris)- completely hollow cap and stem, ridges and pits are randomly arranged.

That's an older book. I also pulled out my Audubon Society guide to mushrooms.

Because this book is so technical, I'll just give you the names of some look-alikes it says are poisonous to google.

1) conifer false morel (gyromitra esculenta)- deadly. This does not look at all like a morel to me. Google some images and take a look.

2) Gabled false morel (gyromitra brunnea)- poisonous (no deaths have been linked to it but causes diarrhea, headaches, vomiting). This also does not look much like a morel, IMO.

3)Saddle shaped false morel (gyromitra infula)- poisonous. Also does not look like a morel IMO.

There are some other "false" morels listed, but they are almost all listed as "edible, with caution" or "choice, with caution". This means that some people have a reaction to them and you should consume a very small amount the first time to see if it makes you feel ill. I've eaten many of these and have not had any problems. Most of them don't really look like morels either.

If you plan to hunt, it's worth investing in a good mushroom book. Audubon society one is excellent but very dry. There are some which are more geared toward hunting edible mushrooms like the first book I used.

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Re: Do you have any morels at all?

Post by BuffTrek on Thu Mar 25, 2010 11:06 am

I appreciate the info!
I suppose I'll look for the Audobon guide before jumping into things.
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Re: Do you have any morels at all?

Post by east_stingray on Thu Mar 25, 2010 9:29 pm

Sure thing! Make sure and join up on one of our outings. We can take some time to do a little mushroom hunting.

I think we're going to Eagle Rock Loop again soon, and I'm up in the buffalo river area as often as I can get away from LR. It would be nice to have someone closer to my age going with us. It's usually just me and a bunch of old geezers Very Happy

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Re: Do you have any morels at all?

Post by Trail Monkey on Fri Mar 26, 2010 6:42 am

Bite me....
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Re: Do you have any morels at all?

Post by east_stingray on Fri Mar 26, 2010 2:57 pm

Trail Monkey wrote:Bite me....

...this particular old geezer at least has the good sense to not sleep on the ground Very Happy.

So how's that HH working for you, TM?

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Re: Do you have any morels at all?

Post by Trail Monkey on Fri Mar 26, 2010 5:10 pm

You know... I have yet found the opportunity to test it yet lol
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Re: Do you have any morels at all?

Post by BuffTrek on Sat Mar 27, 2010 2:45 pm

I still haven't got the chance to do the ERL
until then, I'm currently in the process of getting all the trails in the Ponca Wilderness Area tracked via GPS coords, so I'm up there about once a week...
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Re: Do you have any morels at all?

Post by Trail Monkey on Sat Mar 27, 2010 4:47 pm

Hey Buff.. I would be interested in your .gpx file when your done with that.
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Re: Do you have any morels at all?

Post by zenlizard on Sat Mar 27, 2010 9:55 pm

Regarding morel identification... I've never picked one that wasn't hollow. The lookalike poisonous gyromitra species have folds instead of craters with ridges. Here's a pic of a false morel. Notice the folds.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gyromitra_esculenta

Here is a morel

http://www.naturephoto-cz.com/photos/maly/morchella-esculenta-464.jpg

If you find anything you think is a morel post a pic and I'll tell you for sure. On second though just tell me where you found them and leave them alone. You can never be too safe.

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Re: Do you have any morels at all?

Post by BuffTrek on Sun Mar 28, 2010 10:21 am

I just recently started tracking everything and have Centerpoint, some of the eastern Bench Trail, a few horse trails, and some bushwhacking side trips - not a lot yet...
I actually have them posted with pics and links on a Facebook group I recently started - "Bushwhack the Ozarks"
Once I get a large enough compilation of the trails in the area - I'll send you a copy of the .gpx though!
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Re: Do you have any morels at all?

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