Queensland Fungi

These fungi images were taken over decades by amateur photographers Jack Bain and his daughter Cynthia O'Gorman in various locations around Queensland, Australia

By QUT Digital Collections

Bain, Jack (1970) Macrolepiota dolichaula (white parasol), Bunya Mountains.

Queensland University of Technology (QUT) acknowledges the Turrbal and Yugara as the First Nations owners of the lands where QUT now stands. We pay respect to their Elders, lores, customs and creation spirits. We recognise that these lands have always been places of teaching, research and learning. QUT acknowledges the important role Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people play within the QUT community. 

Fungi, Bunya Mountains (1964) by Jack BainQUT Digital Collections

Fungi of the Bunya Mountains, Queensland June 1964

Fungi are neither animals nor plants. They are so different from other living things that scientists have put them in a kingdom of their own. Fungi are like aliens from another planet. 

Fungus, Bunya Mountains (1964-06) by Jack BainQUT Digital Collections

Bunya, Mountains, Queensland June, 1964

They are so different, fascinating and unknown to us that they get their own classification. These strange alien-like things have given us many gifts, from penicillin to food, but they can also be quite scary, toxic and parasitic.

Pycnoporus coccineus (southern cinnabar polypore), Bunya Mountains (1956-07) by Jack BainQUT Digital Collections

Fabulous Queensland Fungi

These fungi images were taken over decades by amateur photographers Jack Bain and his daughter Cynthia O'Gorman in various locations around Queensland, Australia. QUT Digital Collections is home to Bain/O'Gorman photographs. 

Luminous fungi, Jack Bain, 1964-06, From the collection of: QUT Digital Collections
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Fungi, Bunya Mountains, Jack Bain, 1964, From the collection of: QUT Digital Collections
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Fungi are not part of the animal kingdom, and they're not part of the plant kingdom. They are so different, fascinating and unknown to us that they get their own classification. These strange alien-like things have given us many gifts, from penicillin to food, but they can also be quite scary, toxic and parasitic. Underground is where their most interesting, and intimate work, takes place. The alluring aliens of our forests - ABC Radio

Ileodictyon cibarius (white basket fungus), Before and After Bursting (1964-06) by Jack BainQUT Digital Collections

Bain, Jack (1964) Ileodictyon cibarius (white basket fungus)

This fungus is native to Australia and New Zealand, where it can be found in forests and woodlands.  The structure consists of interlaced white or cream-colored ribs or plates that form a hollow, spherical or oval-shaped structure. 

Laetiporus sp. (chicken of the woods), Springbrook, Queensland, Jack Bain, 1959-03, From the collection of: QUT Digital Collections
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Laetiporus sp. (chicken of the woods), Springbrook, Jack Bain, 1959-03, From the collection of: QUT Digital Collections
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Laetiporus is a genus of edible mushrooms that can be found in various parts of the world. One well-known species within this genus is Laetiporus sulphureus, which goes by several common names such as sulphur shelf, chicken of the woods, chicken mushroom, or chicken fungus. Laetiporus sulphureus is often sought after by foragers and mushroom enthusiasts due to its culinary value. It is renowned for its taste and texture, which is said to resemble that of chicken meat. 

Stereum ostrea (false turkey-tail), Bunya Mountains, Jack Bain, 1956-07, From the collection of: QUT Digital Collections
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Stereum ostrea (false turkey-tail), Bunya Mountains, Queensland, Jack Bain, 1956-07, From the collection of: QUT Digital Collections
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Stereum ostrea, commonly known as false turkey-tail or golden curtain crust, is a basidiomycete fungus belonging to the genus Stereum. It is known for being a plant pathogen and a wood decay fungus, commonly found growing on tree bark. The name "ostrea," derived from the word "oyster," refers to its shell-like shape.   

Calvatia sp. (puffball), 8 Inch High and Across, Bunya Mountains, Jack Bain, 1956-07, From the collection of: QUT Digital Collections
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Tree Lichen, Mooloolaba, Jack Bain, 1975-12, From the collection of: QUT Digital Collections
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Some fungi are large, dark colours (puff balls) or blend into their backgrounds like the tree lichen

Pycnoporus coccineus (southern cinnabar polypore), Bunya Mountains, Jack Bain, 1956-07, From the collection of: QUT Digital Collections
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Purple Toadstools, Cynthia O'Gorman, 1987-06, From the collection of: QUT Digital Collections
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The colors displayed by fungi are often stunning. Fungi come in a wide array of colors, ranging from vibrant and eye-catching to subtle and earthy tones. These colors serve various functions and play significant roles in their ecology and interactions with other organisms. Some of the reasons for the striking colours are : spore dispersal; attracting dispersal agents; chemical defense; environmental adaptation; interactions with other organisms; biochemical pigments and species identification.

Fungus, Bunya Mountains, Jack Bain, 1964-06, From the collection of: QUT Digital Collections
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Dacryopinax spathularia (sweet osmanthus ear), Bunya Mountains, Queensland, Jack Bain, 1964-06, From the collection of: QUT Digital Collections
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Fungi are incredible organisms with far-reaching impacts on our lives, ranging from essential medicines to culinary delights and ecological contributions. Their diverse nature and unique characteristics make them fascinating subjects for scientists and enthusiasts alike.

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