Resources for Fungi Identification

Discussion forum for all Fungi (Micro and Macro-fungi) related topics.

Resources for Fungi Identification

Postby SteveMcBill on Wed Jan 27, 2016 8:15 pm

Resources for Fungi Identification:

NB: Any links to book details are for information only and confer no allegiance to any specific supplier. Books may be obtained from other suppliers from whom prices and availability may differ.

Literature and Resources for Fungi on Miscellaneous Substrates:

Microfungi on Miscellaneous Substrates – An Identification Handbook (New Enlarged Edition).
By Martin B. Ellis and J, Pamela Ellis. This edition published 1998, 246 pages, hardback.
Includes host-substrate sections for: bryophytes, fungi, myxomycetes, burnt ground, charcoal, soil, dung, bones, feathers, paper, cloth, etc.
Contains descriptions of about 750 species, accompanied by over 500 b/w line illustrations, extensive keys, and glossary.
Now out of print – but highly recommended if you can track down a copy at reasonable price !

Keys to Fungi on Dung – By M.J. Richardson and Roy Watling. Published 1997. 68 pages, softback.
Contains extensive keys, along with 86 b/w line illustrations.
Again out of print, but well worth tracking down for those with an interest.
A usable PDF download of the book can be had via the BMS website, here:-

Online Key to Food Fungi: (it is quite old (1984) but is all I've been able to find)

Fungi That Grow On Other Fungi: (PDF Download):-

Fungi That Grow On Myxomycetes: -

Literature and Resources for Ascomycetes:

Fungi of Switzerland (Vol.1) Ascomycetes - by J. Breitenbach & F. Kränzlin. Published 1984, 310 pages, hardback, 29 x 21.5 x 2cm.
One of the series of 6 Fungi of Switzerland books. Contains identification key, and descriptions of macroscopic and microscopic characteristics of 390 species, each accompanied by a good quality photograph, and b/w line illustrations.

British Cup Fungi and Their Allies - by R.W.G. Dennis. Published 1960, 280 pages, plus a further 20 pages of b/w line illustrations, and 40 pages of colour illustrations. Hardback, 24.5 x 16 x 2.8cm.
Now long out of print and becoming increasingly costly in the used book market, but well worth tracking down if a copy can be found at reasonable price.

British Ascomycetes - by R.W.G. Dennis. (Second Impression - Published 1981), 650 pages (including addenda and corrigenda, 35 pages of b/w line illustrations, and 45 pages of colour illustrations). Hardback, 23 x 15 x 5cm.
Also long out of print, much harder to find, and even more costly than the above in the used book market - but still acknowledged as one of the best books available on the subject.
A modern reprint of the book is currently available from this supplier. (I have not seen a copy so cannot comment upon it):-

Microfungi on Land Plants - An Identification Handbook - by Martin B. Ellis and J. Pamela Ellis. (New Enlarged Edition - Published 1997), 870 pages, 24 x 16 x 4.8cm. This book is not specific to ascomycetes, but covers the full spectrum of fungi that can be found growing on plants. (Including rusts, smuts, mildews, hyphomycetes, coelomycetes, etc. etc.).
Contains extensive keys, descriptions of macro and micro characteristics of over 3500 species, more than 2200 b/w line illustrations, and indices both by fungus and by host plant.

There is also a wealth of resources at:, where you will find Europe's leading ascomycete specialists.

Ascomycetes in Colour - by Peter Thompson - illustrates and describes 700 species of fungi from the ascomycota. These fungi are mainly cups, discs and spheres which grow on, or just beneath the surface of their host. Their shapes, sizes, colours and textures vary greatly and together they represent an intricate and beautiful part of the fungus kingdom, which is just waiting to be explored. They can be found throughout the year growing on a wide range of substrates, including decaying wood and leaves, herbaceous stems, grasses, sedges, rushes, ferns, dung and burnt ground. All of the species have been found and photographed in habitats such as woodland, grassland, heathland, coastal sand dunes, marshes, banks of streams and edges of ponds in mainland Britain. A nice feature is that Peter sends regular emails with pdfs of species not in the book when he finds them.

Ascomycete Fungi on Lichens - A website dedicated to the identification and study of bryoparasitic Pezizales, a small group of about 90 closely related species of Ascomycetes which are parasitic on Bryophytes.

Literature and Resources For Rusts, Smuts and Mildews:

British Rust Fungi - Malcolm Wilson and DM Henderson (ISBN-13: 9780521279260)
Roesten van Nederland (Dutch Rust Fungi) - AJ Termorshuizen and CA Swertz (ISBN 978-90-6464-483-2)
Downy Mildews, Powdery Mildews, Smuts and Rusts - 1996 - Tom F Preece, BMS
Rust Fungus - Red Data List and Census Catalogue for Wales - Ray G. Woods, R. Nigel Stringer, Debbie A. Evans and Arthur O. Chater -
(pdf) Checklist of British Rust Fungi - D.M.Henderson - A checklist of the Rust Fungi of the British Isles. British Mycological Society, RBG Kew (ISBN 0-9527704-4-X)

Illustrated Genera of Rust Fungi - 3rd Edition" - by George B. Cummins and Yasuyuki Hiratsuka.

Ultrastructure of Rust Fungi - by Larry J. Littlefield, and Michele C. Heath.

Fungi - Ascomycetes, Ustilaginales, Uredinales - by Helen-Gwynne-Vaughan, although published in 1922, is still useful, and is currently available in paperback form.

Out of print books that can still be found in the used book market include: -
The British Rust Fungi - by W. G. Grove (1913)
A Monograph of the British Uredineae and Ustilagineae - by Charles B. Plowright (1889)
Mildews, Rusts, and Smuts - by George and Ivy Massee (1913)
Microscopic Fungi - Rust, Smut, Mildew, & Mould - by M. C. Cooke (1898)

These four out of print books can also be had as modern day reissues, but beware, most such reissues are created by scanning and optical character recognition processes, which often leads to missing illustrations, very faint pages, and incorrect or missing characters from the text. (Far better in my opinion to seek out usable copies of the original books).

It is though, worth noting that excellent pdf downloads of the original four books can be freely had from the Internet Archive website. See:- - Grove - Plowright - Cooke
(The Massee book is available somewhere in the Archive site, but I can't find it at present).
On the pages brought up by the links, there is a download options table at right hand side - pdf being one of those options.

Debbie Evans' illustrated articles in the Herefordshire Fungus Survey Group Newsletters - issues 19, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, & 27:

Roesten van Nederland - Dutch Rusts - A.J.Terorshuizen and C.A. Swertz - 2011 re-print - now available from Summerfield Books - website: - For anyone who has this book, the information available here might be of some use:-

Literature and Resources For Myxomycetes (Slime Moulds):

Modern day, in print, English language books on the subject of myxomycetes are few and far between. The UK myxo enthusiast is not particularly well catered for. However, the books mentioned below can still be found in various forms.

Myxomycetes – A Handbook of Slime Molds (Stephenson & Stempen), 183 pages, was originally published in 1994 – (But is now only available new as a paperback, black & white reprint published in year 2000). It can be useful, but only includes about 175 species.

Les Myxomycètes – (Michel Poulain, Marianne Meyer, & Jean Bozonnet), at more than 1100 pages, is superb, but by no means inexpensive!
It is formatted as two volumes. The first containing truly excellent high magnification macro photographs and line drawn microscopic detail illustrations, (1 species per page). The second book contains written descriptions, keys, etc. etc. The book’s primary language is French – but all of the species descriptions and keys are also provided in English.

A Guide to Temperate Myxomycetes – (NE Nannenga-Bremekamp), 409 pages, and originally published in 1991, is now available translated into English. - I can’t comment on this one, as I haven’t seen the book.

Out of print books that can be tracked down include: -

The Myxomycetes of Britain and Ireland – (Bruce Ing), 374 pages, published in 1999, and now hideously expensive on the second hand market. However, this book is still the one to get for anyone interested in UK myxo’s, and if it can be found at a reasonable price, is highly recommended.
The book contains descriptions for almost all British species, including habitat, distribution, microscopic details, keys, glossary, and rudimentary black & white line illustrations.
Professor Ing has intimated that a paperback reprint is in the pipeline, (which will also include about 30 pages of additional species and more up-to-date information), but as yet, there is no indication of a likely publication date.

A Monograph of the Mycetozoa – (Arthur Lister), ~ 400 pages, originally published in 1894, can be had as a modern day reissue, but only with b/w illustrations, (and beware of issues created by scanning and OCR technology that can lead to numerous imperfections).
However, a pdf download of the second revised edition (of 1911), with colour plates, can be had from the Internet Archive website. (See Link(s) Below).

Biodiversity In The North West: The Slime Moulds of Cheshire - by Bruce Ing, 2011 - University of Chester Press, (ISBN 978-1-905929-91-7), 76pp.

Three long out of print books, but containing very useful and still valid species descriptions can be downloaded directly from the links below.
NB: Note that these are substantial PDF downloads !

The Myxomycetes - a descriptive list of the known species with special reference to those occurring in North America, 1934. By Thomas Huston Macbride & George Willard Martin: -
(NB: The above link directly initiates the 18MB PDF download).

The Myxomycetes of Great Britain arranged according to the method of Rostafinski, 1877. By Mordecai Cubitt Cooke:-
(NB: The above link directly initiates the 11MB PDF download).

A Monograph of the Mycetozoa - 2nd revised edition, 1911. By Arthur Lister & Gulielma Lister.
(NB: The above link directly initiates the 30MB PDF download).

Literature and Resources For Crust Fungi, Bracket Fungi, etc.:

A Field Guide to the Resupinates of Hampshire - by Paul Hugill and Alan Lucas, 2015 - 347pp - Each species photographically illustrated. New species plates and data sent out in PDF form via email.


North West Fungus Group (NWFG) Website:

North West Fungus Group (NWFG) Facebook Group:

Posts: 832
Joined: Thu Jul 31, 2008 9:15 am
Location: Runcorn, Cheshire

Return to Fungi

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest