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NATURAL HISTORY, TORONTO REGION

 

seem to be not more than two or three species which are likely to be taken for edible mushrooms but are poisonous. There are several more or less hurtful species which by their peculiar appearance or disagreeable taste warn off or offer no temptation to the experimenter. The Fly Agaric (Amanita muscaria) and Amanita phalloides (including all its varieties, and Amanita verna among them) are, so far as I have discovered in the Toronto district, the only forms which are dangerous, and of these Amanita. muscaria raises a warning signal by its bright orange or yellow-orange colour, and is naturally avoided as a poisonous " toadstool." Both these species are extremely common in woody places near Toronto towards the end of August or during the first two weeks of September. The variety of Amanita phalloides, which has a brownish pileus, has probably been frequently mistaken by those who have no know-ledge of the subject for the common field mushroom, with unfortunate and often fatal result; but any one who has even a slight acquaintance with the botanical points of difference could soon without difficulty distinguish the one from the other. There is, however, some danger, it seems to me, that an inaccurate beginner in the study of fungi may from insufficiently careful examination mistake the white varieties of Amanita phalloides for Lepiota naucinoides, where they are together in the collection basket, or where from some accidental cause the one has trespassed on the domain of the other. Young specimens, too,

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