Magpie Inkcap – Coprinus picaceus

November 22nd, 2008 | Written by Lucy Brzoska.

I found these Magpie Inkcaps (Coprinus picaceus) in a dark damp corner of Collserola, growing among brambles. When fresh, their glistening caps are cylindrical and covered in tattered veil remnants.

As the gills liquify, the cap shrinks and flattens. Its brim rolls up and drips an inky substance. This allows all the spores to get their turn at maximum exposure, so they can be carried away by air currents.

Spores dispersed, the inkcap collapses, dissolved like the Wicked Witch of the West.