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     Lycogala epidendrum        Wolf's Milk

Lycogala epidendrum produces an aethalium type fruitbody. In general aethalia are large, variable in size and/or shape and are solitary or few in number. Lycogala is exceptional in that it produces its fruitbodies in large numbers; as a result the aethalia are much smaller than most aethaloid species. You can see in the picture, however, the great range in size of the fruitbodies. The aethalia range from 2-12 mm in diameter. In sporangial slime moulds the fruitbodies are more or less uniform in size and shape (close to 1:1 by volume)

For many slime moulds you are nearly on top of them before you notice them. Young Lycogala fruitbodies, however, are bright cinnabar and can attract the eye at some distance. As they mature the fruitbodiies turn brown and the outer wall (= peridium) sometimes has a metalic sheen.