Stereum sanguinolentum

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Stereum sanguinolentum
2006-03-10 Stereum sanguinolentum.jpg
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Fungi
Division: Basidiomycota
Order: Russulales
Family: Stereaceae
Genus: Stereum
Species: S. sanguinolentum
Binomial name
Stereum sanguinolentum
(Alb. & Schwein.) Fr. (1838)

Thelephora sanguinolenta Alb. & Schwein. (1805)
Phlebomorpha sanguinolenta (Alb. & Schwein.) Pers. (1822)
Thelephora sericea var. sanguinolenta (Alb. & Schwein.) Pers. (1822)
Auricularia sanguinolenta (Alb. & Schwein.) Grev. (1826)
Merulius sanguinolentus (Alb. & Schwein.) Spreng. (1827)
Stereum balsameum Peck (1875)
Haematostereum sanguinolentum (Alb. & Schwein.) Pouzar (1959)

Stereum sanguinolentum is a species of fungus in the Stereaceae family. A plant pathogen, it causes red heart rot, a red discoloration on conifers, particularly spruces or Douglas-firs. Fruit bodies are produced on dead wood, or sometimes on dead branches of living trees. They are a thin leathery crust of the wood surface. Fresh fruit bodies will bleed a red-colored juice if injured, reflected in the common names bleeding Stereum or the bleeding conifer parchment. It can be the host of the parasitic jelly fungus Tremella encephala.[2]


The species was first described scientifically by Albertini and Schweinitz in 1805 as Thelephora sanguinolenta.[3] Other genera to which it has been transferred throughout its taxonomical history include Phlebomorpha, Auricularia, Merulius, and Haematostereum.[1] The fungus is commonly known as the "bleeding Stereum" or the "bleeding conifer parchment".[4]


The fruit body of Stereum sanguinolentum manifests itself as a thin (typically less than 1 mm thick) leathery crust on the surface of the host wood. Often, the upper edge is curled to form a narrow shelf (usually less than 10 mm thick). When present, these shelves are can be fused to or overlap neighboring shelves. The surface of the fruit body consists of a layer of fine felt-like hairs, sometimes pressed flat against the surface. The color ranges from beige to buff to dark brown in mature specimens; the margin are lighter-colored. Fresh fruit bodies that are injured exude a red juice, or will bruise a red color if touched. The fruit bodies dry to a greyish-brown color. The spores are ellipsoid to cylindrical, amyloid, and typically measure 7–10 by 3–4.5 µm.[5]

Stereum sanguinolentum can be parasitized by the jelly fungus Tremella encephala.[2]

Habitat, distribution, and ecology[edit]

Stereum sanguinolentum can be parasitized by the fungus Tremella encephala

The fungus causes a brown heart rot, resulting in wood that is a light brown to red-brown color, and dry, with a stringy texture. A cross-section of infected wood reveals a circular infection around the center of the log.[6] It enter opens wounds of plants caused by mechanical damage or by grazing wildlife. Fragments of mycelia can be spread by wood wasps (genus Sirex).[4] The rot spreads up to 40 cm (16 in) per year.[7] It has also been recorded on balsam fir, Douglas fir, and western hemlock.[8] The fungus is widespread in distribution, and has been recorded from North America, Europe, east Africa, New Zealand,[7] and Australia.[9]


  1. ^ a b "Stereum sanguinolentum (Alb. & Schwein.) Fr. 1838". International Mycological Association. Retrieved 2011-07-07. 
  2. ^ a b Zugmaier W, Bauer R, Oberwinkler F (1994). "Mycoparasitism of Some Tremella Species". Mycologia. 86 (1): 49–56. doi:10.2307/3760718. JSTOR 3760718. 
  3. ^ Albertini JB, von Schweinitz LD (1805). Conspectus Fungorum in Lusatiae superioris (in Latin). Leipzig, Germany: Sumtibus Kummerianis. p. 274. 
  4. ^ a b Schmidt O. (2006). Wood and Tree Fungi: Biology, Damage, Protection, and Use. Berlin, Germany: Springer. p. 195. ISBN 3-540-32138-1. 
  5. ^ Eriksson J, Hjortstam K, Ryvarden L (1984). The Corticiaceae of North Europe. Vol. 7, Schizopora-Suillosporium. 7. Oslo, Norway: Fungiflora. p. 1431. 
  6. ^ McKnight TE, Mullins EJ (1981). Canadian Woods: Their Properties and Uses (3rd ed.). Toronto, Canada: University of Toronto Press. p. 190. ISBN 978-0-8020-2430-5. 
  7. ^ a b Smith IA. (1988). European handbook of plant diseases. Wiley-Blackwell. p. 512. ISBN 978-0-632-01222-0. 
  8. ^ Tainter FH, Baker FA (1996). Principles of Forest Pathology. Chichester: Wiley. p. 764. ISBN 978-0-471-12952-3. 
  9. ^ May TW, Milne J, Shingles S. (2003). Fungi of Australia: Catalogue and bibliography of Australian fungi. Basidiomycota p.p. & Myxomycota p.p. Csiro Publishing. p. 307. ISBN 978-0-643-06907-7. 

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