Mica Cap

(Coprinellus micaceus)

Conservation Status

IUCN Red List

not listed

NatureServe

not listed

Minnesota

not listed

 
Mica Cap
Photo by CG
 
Description

Mica Cap is a very common and very widespread mushroom. It has been collected in Europe, Asia, Africa, and North and South America. In the United States has been seen from coast to coast. It occurs from April through October in hardwood and mixed forests and woodlands. It grows in dense clusters usually on decaying hardwood stumps, logs, and woody debris, sometimes on the ground growing on buried wood. It obtains its nutrients from already decaying hardwood (saprobic), especially bark.

The cap when young is oval, tan to yellowish brown or tawny, and darkest in the center. It is narrowly grooved (striate) at least half way to the margin. It is covered with minute, loosely-attached, whitish, glistening particles. The particles are remnants of an egg-like structure (universal veil) that protected the newly emerging mushroom. The particles soon wash away with rain or dew and the cap first becomes bell-shaped then flattens out. The mature cap is ¾ to 2 in diameter and grayish, especially toward the margin. As it ages the margins dissolve progressively inward into black ink at that drips to the ground.

The gills are pale at first and crowded. They may be broadly attached to the stalk (adnate), narrowly attached (adnexed), or not attached (free). As they mature they turn gray or brownish, then ultimately black. As they release their spores they self-digest, turning into black ink at that drips to the ground.

The stalk is white, smooth, hollow, and fragile, It is usually 1¾ to 3 long and 1 16 to ¼ in diameter. Large individuals may be up to 4¾ tall.

The flesh is soft and white or pale. It is edible but thin and watery. Cooking soon after picking is recommended because the caps begin to liquify (auto digest) as soon as one hour after picking. Cooking stops the autodigestion.

The spores are black.

 

Similar Species

 
Habitat and Hosts

Hardwood and mixed forests and woodlands, suburbs, urban areas

Ecology

Season

April through October

Distribution

Distribution Map

 

Sources

4, 7, 24, 26, 29, 30, 77.

5/6/2024    
     

Occurrence

Widespread and very common

Taxonomy

Kingdom

Fungi (fungi)

Subkingdom

Dikarya

Division

Basidiomycota (club fungi)

Subdivision

Agaricomycotina (jelly fungi, yeasts, and mushrooms)

Class

Agaricomycetes (mushrooms, bracket fungi, puffballs, and allies)

Subclass

Agaricomycetidae

Order

Agaricales (common gilled mushrooms and allies)

Suborder

Agaricineae

Family

Psathyrellaceae (brittlestems and allies)

Genus

Coprinellus

Section

Micacei

   

Mica Cap was originally described in 1786 as Agaricus micaceus. In 1838 it was moved to the genus Coprinus. A molecular DNA study published in 2001 showed that most of the species in the genus Coprinus were only distantly related to the type species Coprinus comatus. All but three species were moved to the new family Psathyrellaceae and assigned new genera. Coprinus micaceus became Coprinellus micaceus.

   

Subordinate Taxa

 

   

Synonyms

Agaricus micaceus

Coprinus micaceus

 

 

Common Names

Glistening Inkcap

Glistening Inky Cap

Mica Cap

Shiny Cap

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Glossary

Saprobic

A term often used for saprotrophic fungi. Referring to fungi that obtain their nutrients from decayed organic matter.

 

Striate

Striped or grooved in parallel lines (striae).

 

Universal veil

An egg-like structure that envelopes all or most of a developing gill mushroom. Remnants of the universal veil sometimes visible on a mature mushroom are patchy warts on the cap, a ring on the stalk, and a volva at the base of the stalk.

Visitor Photos
 

Share your photo of this fungus.

 

This button not working for you?
Simply email us at info@MinnesotaSeasons.com.
Attach one or more photos and, if you like, a caption.

CG

Mica Cap  

Mica Cap

     
Mica Cap   Mica Cap
     
Mica Cap    
are they edible?  

 

Margot Avey

Mica Cap    

Savannah Hanson

Mica Cap  

 

Found in my backyard!  

 

Alissa

Mica Cap  

Mica Cap

Stephanie Segner

Mica Cap or Coprinus micaceus or common inky cap. I found these in several places this season but these pictures were in my yard growing on a stump we pulled up last fall.

  Mica Cap
     
Mica Cap   Mica Cap
MinnesotaSeasons.com Photos
Mica Cap   Mica Cap

Cluster

     
Mica Cap   Mica Cap

Mushroom

  Partially autodigested
     
Mica Cap   Mica Cap

Cap

 

Mica Cap   Mica Cap

 

Gills

 

 

 
   
   

Stem

 

Camera

Slideshows

 

 
 

 

slideshow

Visitor Videos
 

Share your video of this fungus.

 

This button not working for you?
Simply email us at info@MinnesotaSeasons.com.
Attach a video, a YouTube link, or a cloud storage link.

 

 

 
 
Other Videos

On Mica Caps
The Richest Fare

About

Published on Mar 26, 2016

An overview of the mica cap mushroom as a wild edible.

Go to therichestfare.com for more about real food, healthy living and spiritual encouragement.

Mica Cap Mushroom Identification - Morel Season Mushrooms
MiWilderness

About

Published on May 18, 2014

Thanks for watching MiWilderness.

Coprinellus micaceus AKA Mica Cap Mushrooms Video/Daily Video V log while Mushroom Hunting
Walt Reven Jr

About

Published on Sep 24, 2017

Found in northwest arkansas in late july under a dead oak tree. Not much more to say, enjoy the video everyone :)

Coprinellus micaceus, the mica cap. 4/9/11 in Shoreline, WA, USA.
Cyanescentinel

About

Published on Apr 9, 2011

Coprinellus micaceus, the mica cap. 4/9/11 in Shoreline, WA, USA.

http://www.mushroomexpert.com/coprinellus_micaceus.html

 

Camcorder

Visitor Sightings
 

Report a sighting of this fungus.

 

This button not working for you?
Simply email us at info@MinnesotaSeasons.com.
Be sure to include a location.

CG
5/5/2024

Location: Stearns County

are they edible?

Mica Cap
John Valo
5/6/2024

The flesh is edible. Cooking soon after picking is recommended because the caps begin to liquify (auto digest) as soon as one hour after picking. Cooking stops the autodigestion.

CG
5/6/2024

Thank you!! We fried them up with butter and garlic. They taste just like button mushrooms!

Margot Avey
8/27/2022

Location: Westwood Nature Center, St Louis Park MN

Mica Cap
Savannah Hanson
9/21/2018

Location: St. Paul, MN

Found in my backyard!

Mica Cap
Alissa
9/6/2018

Location: Fillmore County

Mica Cap
Stephanie Segner
6/10/2018

Location: Hennepin County, MN

Mica Cap or Coprinus micaceus or common inky cap. I found these in several places this season but these pictures were in my yard growing on a stump we pulled up last fall.

Mica Cap
MinnesotaSeasons.com Sightings

 

 

Binoculars

 

Created: 7/16/2018

Last Updated:

© MinnesotaSeasons.com. All rights reserved.

About Us

Privacy Policy

Contact Us