Inocybe erubescens

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Red-staining Inocybe
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Fungi
Phylum: Basidiomycota
Class: Basidiomycetes
Order: Agaricales
Family: Cortinariaceae
Genus: Inocybe
Species: I. erubescens
Binomial name
Inocybe erubescens
A. Blytt

Inocybe patouillardii Bres.

Inocybe erubescens
View the Mycomorphbox template that generates the following list
Mycological characteristics
gills on hymenium

cap is campanulate

or conical
hymenium is adnate
stipe is bare
spore print is brown
ecology is mycorrhizal
edibility: deadly

Inocybe erubescens, also known as I. patouillardii, commonly known as the deadly fibrecap, brick-red tear mushroom or red-staining inocybe, is a poisonous basidiomycete fungus, one of many in the genus Inocybe and one of the few known to have caused death. It is found growing in small groups on leaf litters in association with beech. All mushroom guidebooks as well as the mushroomers advise that the entire genus should be avoided. The fruiting bodies (i.e., the mushrooms) appear in spring and summer; the bell-shaped caps are generally pale pinkish in colour with red stains, with a reddish-pink stipe and gills.

Taxonomy and naming[edit]

The red-staining inocybe was first described by Axel Gudbrand Blytt in 1904 as Inocybe erubescens, though was widely known for many years as I. patouillardii, named by Italian Giacomo Bresadola in 1905 after the French botanist Narcisse Théophile Patouillard. However, the former name takes priority due to age.


The cap is hemispherical before flattening out and can reach 8 cm (3.4 in) in diameter. It is variable in colour, initially white though becoming yellow or brownish with age, and stained with pink-white and red marks or lines. The edge of the cap is often irregular with split edges and rough texture. The adnexed gills are reddish-pink. The stem, dark red-pink, is thin with no ring. The flesh is initially yellowish, later dark pink. The colour tends to fade in direct sunlight. It may be mistaken for Calocybe gambosa, though the latter does not stain red, Agaricus species or Cortinarius caperatus.[1]

Distribution and habitat[edit]

It is commonest in beech woods and chalky soils, but grows in other broad-leaved woodland as well. It mainly grows on leaf litter usually during the spring and summer seasons. It is found in southern Europe and has been recorded from eastern Anatolia in Turkey.[2]


Inocybe erubescens contains muscarine, in much higher doses than Amanita muscaria and has been known to cause death, unlike the latter mushroom.[3] One fatality was recorded in Surrey in southern England in 1937.[4]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Zeitlmayr L (1976). Wild Mushrooms:An Illustrated Handbook. Garden City Press, Hertfordshire. p. 77. ISBN 0-584-10324-7. 
  2. ^ Demirel K, Uzun Y, Kaya A (2004). "Some Poisonous Fungi of East Anatolia" (PDF). Turk J Bot 28: 215–19. Retrieved 2008-02-08. 
  3. ^ Benjamin DR. (1995). Mushrooms, Poisons and Panaceas: A Handbook for Naturalists, Mycologists, and Physicians. W H Freeman & Co. ISBN 0-7167-2649-1
  4. ^ Ramsbotton, John (1945). Poisonous Fungi. London: Penguin. p. 28. 
  • North, Pamela (1967). Poisonous Plants and Fungi in colour. Blandford Press & Pharmacological Society of Great Britain. 
  • Toxicity, Mushrooms - Muscarine