Slime Time

Yellow-fuzz cone slime (Hemitrichia clavata) is a slime mold that is found in clusters on rotting wood. Neither plant nor animal, slime molds are known for the dramatic transformations they go through from the time they first appear to their disintegration. Slimy and mold-like when they first emerge, they change color, shape, and texture as they develop.

Yellow-fuzz cone slime was named for its reproductive stage. When its gelatinous plasmodium starts fruiting, it forms tiny, round, shiny spore-bearing sporangia that can be orange to yellow. When the spores mature, the tops of these sporangia open up, creating goblet-shaped cups filled with yellowish, fuzzy threads interspersed with pale yellow spores. The threads are thought to help the spores disperse. The stages of yellow-fuzz cone slime are so different that you might not recognize that they are the same species.

 
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