The mycologists among you will know that this is a post about the Stinkhorn Mushroom.
We were on the lookout for them during one of our dog walks.
I sent P on ahead. He has a nose for these sort of things. He stops every so often and sniffs the air like a Bisto Kid.
"There's one around here somewhere" he proclaims" or a dead animal..."
The fungi are quite difficult to spot but we saw some last year and know roughly where to look.
And there it is growing out of the long grass., a perfect specimen of a Stinkhorn mushroom. It's Latin name is Phallis impudicus. It's the sort of thing that sends 10 year olds into nervous giggles.
The foul smell is produced by a slime and attracts lots of insects especially flies. They then disperse the stinkhorn spores and the life cycle continues.
And if you're really lucky there's some dung flies on the mushroom, attracted by the smell of um...rotting flesh. What a lovely topic!
And if you catch them at the right stage of smelly decomposition the top of the mushroom is covered with flies. How many can you count?
Not a lot of people know this but I find bugs fascinating (except for house spiders with their long creepy legs and nasty habit of appearing when least expected) and close-ups of them in particular.
So if you are of a delicate disposition or couldn't bear to watch Jeff Goldblum in "The Fly" , look away now!
The Dung fly in glorious detail!
I've also belatedly linked up with Macro Friday