New Edible Chanterelle

gray chanterelle

Gray chanterelle
© 1984 Darvin DeShazer

SOMA's former president, Darvin DeShazer, discovered a previously undescribed species of Cantharellus in Humboldt County in northern California. Dr. Harry Thiers confirmed this as a new species based on the lack of staining, cap color, and pallid gills.

Species description

The gray chanterelles have a pure white hymenium and a gray pileus. They were found in 1984 growing under old-growth Sitka spruce on Murrary Road in McKinleyville, California

Are there any specimens?

Oh, yeah, about that—Darvin ate 'em. Nothing remains except a couple photos. Since then, Simpson Timber has logged the site and removed the trees. There was one other location where Darvin used to collect them, but Simpson has also logged that site. They did leave the one tree that the gray chanterelles fruited under, but dense brush growth has prevented him from getting back to see about a collection for science.

So if you find yourself in old-growth Sitka spruce forest, keep your eyes peeled!