Hacker News new | past | comments | ask | show | jobs | submit login
Show HN: Magic Mushroom Map (magicmushroommap.com)
171 points by pbaumel 9 days ago | hide | past | favorite | 107 comments

As someone who forages mushrooms pretty extensively my advice is not to forage psychedelic mushrooms as a beginner. Most psilocybin mushrooms fall into the colloquial category of "LBMs" (little brown mushrooms) and the advice is almost always not to forage LBMs because there a million of them, they all look alike, and you might not know from region to region what the risk of look a likes are. '

So unless you have a region specific guidebook, and can make an absolutely positive identification (which probably involves identifying spores from a print under a microscope for LBMs), you really should not forage LBMs or any mushrooms for that fact. In some cases you might also need to know how to safely taste or smell the mushrooms and then know what you are tasting or smelling for. No beginner is going to be able to do any of that.

Let someone else grow them from a verified strain from a syringe. It's much safer.

As an aside, mushroom foraging is very beginner friendly as long as you stick to the right categories. Things like Chicken of The Woods, oysters, and maitakke are very easy to positively identify and don't have many look alikes in most parts of the US. The often propogated idea that mushroom foraging is only for safe for trained experts is totally untrue. The average person can safely forage for mushrooms. Just buy a region specific guidebook, and stick to the categories that your book tells you are safe for your region.

There's a crazy amount of inertia around the 'mushroom foraging is only for experts' idea. I was just telling my mother in law this weekend that in our area there are no killer mushrooms. There are mushrooms that taste very bad, and (in the worst case) will cause stomach upset (vomiting) but nothing that will kill you outright. I was trying to encourage her to try some of the more well known edible wild varieties (which as the parent comment pointed out are often very easily identified) but she wouldn't budge from the belief that if you're not an expert you'll pick a mushroom and die. People are missing out on a very enjoyable past time because of fear mongering.

Here's an example of someone (who ought to have known better) ending up near-death with kidney failure after a misidentification.


> Nicholas - We had this family doctor came around and we knew pretty well actually what they were. I mean, we looked in the book the very next morning when Alastair started feeling ill and Charlotte was already ill. It was so clear from the photograph that what we had eaten, it wasn't a cep. It was themushroom called cortinarius speciosissimus which some people call the deadly webcap apparently. It had a rather comforting skull and cross bones underneath it, with a little caption, deadly poisonous.


I feel bad for the guy -- really, so, so bad -- but you have to be really confused to mix up a bolete with a webcap.

Webcap: https://www.first-nature.com/fungi/images/cortinariales/cort...

Porcino: https://lovelygreens.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/09/cep-porc...

Porcini don't have gills! This is like mushrooms 101.

Doesn't this kind of prove the rule? I feel like most of the cases of people getting sick from mushrooms are cases like this.

Any time someone says "this is xyz 101, how could anyone be so confused", I hear instead "the human capacity for doing something without what others view as 'minimum sufficient education to survive it' remains unchanged throughout human history", which is precisely why the warnings are so dire. It's not to scare people away, it's just to offer them a defense versus their own curiosity and impulsiveness until they choose to make time to learn xyz 101.

I guess... I mean, it is more mysterious than you suggest, given that this fellow had been foraging for 10 years apparently.

It's like a driver mixing up the gas and the brake pedal. I don't really have an explanation.

Ah! That sounds like a job for an NTSB-type analysis, because most human WTFs are built on a series of improbable events.

Maybe their glasses were fogged? Maybe the afternoon light was at the right angle to hide the 'gills' enough that their check failed? Maybe they had a time-efficient shortcut that finally found an edge case they hadn't planned for?

Right, of people who die from mushroom poisoning, they are almost all either immigrants eating things that look like edible mushrooms where they come from, or else children who are randomly eating things they see in their lawn. Cases like this where you have someone who has been foraging for decades and eats something deadly poisonous happen maybe once every ten years, and I suspect it's mostly people with early onset Parkinson's or something that's causing them to act impulsively. This isn't an identification mistake, there's clearly some kind of neurological issue here.

From the story it doesn't even appear that they attempted an ID until after they were very ill.

Back to the car analogy, if someone kills themself driving down the wrong side of the highway we don't all give up on driving because it is unsafe.

Yes you can definitely kill yourself foraging mushrooms. It's exceptionally unlikely with even a small bit of precaution and common sense but of course if you disregard all of that you are putting yourself at huge risk. Just like almost every other activity that involves some risks.

The article is only about prevalence of P. Sem. (Liberty cap).

In my experience and in a network of many other people, there are precisely ZERO little brown mushrooms having BOTH a passing resemblance to p. sem. in any conditions (dry/wet or young/old) AND are noxious let alone dangerous.

If its your first time, be cautious, take a good book. On a dry day P. Sem. is easier to distinguish from other species that are safe but wrong. One day of successful foraging and you will know P. Sem. well enough in the wet too.

If it has the characteristic nipple, it is certainly what you are looking for. If not,well it may be, but you can just leave it until your skill improves.

Finally, needless to say, the moment the first mushroom enters your mouth, foraging is over for the day.

This advice is only going to be true in your region. If someone picks up a guidebook for your region and it says that they are safe to pick there then I'm all for it

This is exactly why most foraging illnesses happen to travelers because some thing that is true in a specific place is frequently not true in other places.

> There's a crazy amount of inertia around the 'mushroom foraging is only for experts' idea.

Yeah, it's for good reason, when it comes to "LBMs" - little brown mushrooms - of which the Psilocybe genus is largely composed: You can find example photos of Psychoactive species literally growing right next to e.g. Gallerina species, which will nuke your liver.


Well, vomiting isn't very nice either. And some (many?) folks aren't crazy about mushrooms to start with. They may make apologies of the "I wouldn't know how to pick them safely" sort to avoid having to go mushrooming...

Thats undeniably true, vomiting isn't something anyone wants to do. However you're VERY unlikely to pick anything except what you're looking for if you stick to the 'biggies' of the found mushroom world as the grandparent comment covers--chicken of the wood, hen of the wood, morels, etc. They're quite distinctive and not easily confused with other things. The LBMs are a whole different kettle of fish--you're definitely into 'hard mode' when you try to differentiate those. But until you're an expert there's really no reason you'd even be looking for mushrooms in that category.

Hm. Morels around here come in 4 colors, and some of those can resemble other toxic mushrooms that also grow around here.

It can seem 'easy' to distinguish when familiar. But if you're coming at it fresh it's quite daunting. And to make your friends sick is a significant faux pas.

Anyway that leaves the "I don't want to do this, and I want a 'good reason' and the death card is a good reason" cause of reluctance. It may be more common that we think.

Yeah but how hard is it to get a guidebook and figure out if Morels are a safe pick in your area. If you already know morels have look a likes where you are, then don't pick them unless you have put in the time on your own research and feel you know how to make that particular ID.

Especially after I've picked something, it is really easy to move backwards and say "is there uncertainty with what this could be?".

In years of eating foraged mushrooms, I have never gotten so much as a stomach ache.

If you are making educated identifications (which is really easy to do with the materials available in this age) you shouldn't ever be vomiting when eating mushrooms.

A very small percentage of people cannot handle most of the mushrooms that other people can and will vomit but this is true of many other food categories and is not unique to mushrooms.

You ever try and make accurate spore prints on LBMs without a microscope?

We're talking the entire class of little to no culinary value little brown things. Name some tasty ones, go!

Now let's bring in the 'lets get fucked up' crowd and see how much chaos can happen.

This is absolutely true. I'm an amateur forager, but try to make it out with the mushroom club once per year to learn more. For me, it started with identifying one mushroom (morels) and the variants that make people sick.

Part of me doesn't mind that people stay afraid, it's less competition for a great time hunting. The other part rolls their eyes at those who don't do educated risk for the reward.

Sadly I think it's fine. Where I live in the PNW there are way to many people mushroom foraging who seem to have little to no idea how to be in the woods. People rake the forest floor, people leave trash, people leave toilet paper, etc. I've actually stopped mushroom foraging in most places because the forest completely over foraged. In my experience with most outdoor activities the concept of leave no trace is completely lost on people, so unfortunately I'm fine with less people mushroom foraging.

I try and explain the very easy concept of making a spore print to people and they just look at me like "wow you're really smart i don't think i could do that"


Right after I just explained how easy it is. Reminds me of explaining password mnemonics to people sometimes. I really don't think a lot of people are prepared for taking basic safety measures and the amount of people getting poisoned in the news is high enough that I feel the alarm is warranted. I remember seeing this one photo of a girl biting an amanita species saying how someone here in Costa Rica said it would get her high and she was explaining how she was in so much pain but was asking on FACEBOOK of all websites if there was any 'natural way' to cure it, like uhh yeah no you need a helicopter to the hospital

People are missing out on a very enjoyable past time because of fear mongering.

It's subjective that people would find it enjoyable. Even of all the past times one can do, there are similar ones, like birding, hiking, gardening, etc. We're not short on past times that, even in the worst case, won't even leave you vomiting.

Hiking is far from risk-free, there are many ways to die and people do so somewhat regularly.

No one needs to pick up a manual to hike.

Um, yeah you do. You need to be able to, at a minimum, survive overnight in the event you get stuck up there.

Hiking doesn't necessarily mean going "up", let alone through highly steep paths. Walking through the woods in uneven terrain is hiking.

OK, I should have said "out there" instead of "up there" -- happy now? It doesn't change my point at all. What happens when you twist your ankle in those uneven woods and are unable to get out before nightfall?

Don't hike alone? This isn't complicated.

The context in the above conversation is that the activity is framed as riskier than it realistically is.

I never said it was "complicated." Don't hike alone, leave a detailed itinerary with others, carry warm overnight clothing just in case, etc. Collect a few of these simple rules in one place and what do you have? A manual.

How can we be so certain there are no killer mushrooms in your area? We have no idea what is growing on a daily basis, the guidebooks were only accurate on the date of publication.

This just isn't true. There aren't new mushroom species popping up in the night with any regularity. In the US we have a very good survey of what is out there.

I have never heard a story of someone making a positive identification based on the resources available, then getting poisoned because they had discovered a new species which had total overlap with their positive identification. Doesn't mean it's never happened but I would say if it has it is exceedingly rare.

In the same way we don't not drive because it's possible to crash, I'm not going to stop foraging because of the possibility of super outlier events.

I was talking about misidentifying because there's a mushroom present that 'shouldnt' be in the area, not an entirely new species, lets not get carried away because it frustrated you.

There are plenty of things people dont do because of the risk, so your argument there is complete nonsense.

Sure jumping out of a plane with a parachute is going to be safe if you're confident you know what you're doing, but there's plenty of people (including myself) that wouldn't dare do it.

The comment I responded to had this - "but she wouldn't budge from the belief that if you're not an expert you'll pick a mushroom and die. People are missing out on a very enjoyable past time because of fear mongering."

Which is an unbelievably ignorant attitude. Comes across as "People aren't getting into X hobby I like because they're afraid, so we should peer pressure them into doing it anyway" (even though someone who is nervous is 10x more likely to make a mistake that DOES end in death or illness)

Where do you live that there are no deadly mushrooms? Some amanita species are rapidly spreading to places they haven't been sighted before.

What area are you in that has nothing deadly? That is pretty surprising to me that anywhere meets that criteria. Cool if true.

"There are mushrooms that taste very bad, and (in the worst case) will cause stomach upset (vomiting) but nothing that will kill you outright."

This is false and dangerous misinformation!

Mushrooms can certainly kill you, and people have died from eating poisonous mushrooms.

Just one example, from the Amanita[1] genus:

"Several members of the section Phalloidieae are notable for their toxicity, containing toxins known as amatoxins, which can cause liver failure and death. These include the death cap A. phalloides; species known as destroying angels, including A. virosa, A. bisporigera and A. ocreata; and the fool's mushroom, A. verna."

"More recently, a series in the subgenus Lepidella has been found to cause acute kidney failure, including A. smithiana of northwestern North America, A. pseudoporphyria of Japan, and A. proxima of southern Europe."

[1] - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amanita#Toxicity

He was noting in his specific locale, where it's entirely possible that there aren't any toxic/poisonous variants.

I'm actually kind of skeptical that anywhere exists with no toxic mushrooms. I know in my region there are many. Probably 100+ and at least 5-10 very common ones.

I have to wonder if this is true.

Suppose you find a mushroom that obviously bruises blue and generally matches the phenotype of whatever local psilocybe grows in your area. What's your risk?

I looked into galerina poisonings, being the most similar mushroom I can think of off the top of my head that might poison you, but there are so, so few cases. Maybe 1 every two years? Given how many people forage for magic mushrooms, I have to wonder if the risk is really there.

Open to having my mind changed. I've been foraging for about 10 years, but this is not something I know a whole lot about, except for that I never hear about it.

> Suppose you find a mushroom that obviously bruises blue and generally matches the phenotype of whatever local psilocybe grows in your area. What's your risk?

If it has chocolate brown spores and bruises blue then the risk is zero in every area that I know of. The only issue people are going to have is not knowing what bluing actually is, and thinking "well maybe this is navy blue" or whatever. Or only looking for bluing on some, but not all of the mushrooms in a collection.

I mean, Im really not advising against foraging psilocybes across the board but I feel like it's the kind of thing where if you have to ask, the answer is no.

For what it's worth, in my region(western PA) gallerinas are anecdotally an order of magnitude more common than any psilocybes. Actually the only psilocybin mushroom I've heard of anyone harvesting around here is gymnopilus sp. This one is also notoriously hard to identify.

I'd encourage anyone interested in this to watch Alan Rockefeller's fantastic talks on psilocybin mushroom identification: [1] [2]

If you do decide to pick your own mushrooms, definitely look for the signs he mentions in the videos, make spore prints, and post pictures of the mushrooms to the sites he recommends, where experts can identify them for you.

And remember: There are old mushroom hunters, and there are bold mushroom hunters. But there are no old, bold mushroom hunters.

[1] - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VcL-7u80kjs

[2] - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pInqVRRva7M

Specifically, some species of Psilocybe look almost identical to some Galerina species, and sometimes they grow right next to each other. You don't want to eat Galerina[1].

In my opinion, hunting shelf fungi is pretty beginner friendly. As far as I'm aware, many species are edible, and those that aren't will just give you a stomach ache instead of giving you liver failure.

[1] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Galerina_marginata#Toxicity

You can observe for the presence of psilocybin by blue bruising of the mushroom flesh. If you make a tea, the water will turn blue as psilocybin converts into psilocin through hydrolysis. You can squeeze some lemon juice in to stop the reaction before it turns from blue to dark (i.e. adjust the pH to stop the reaction before the psilocin breaks down into non-active compounds).

Or you can just get some 4-Aco-DMT to convert to psilocin which is way easier to microdose.

Sounds like sensible advice.

I've been led to believe the psilocybin ones have blue stalks which can distinguish them from others, but wouldn't pass that on as advice, myself.

It is true that afaik, every pislocybe species bruises blue, the problem is, could it bruise blue, contain psilocybin, but also be poisonous. I think the truth is that it is pretty rare for that to be the case or may even be non existent but I'd definitely want to get verification on that for my specific region before harvesting anything.

Also, as a general point, it is a myth that bruising blue always indicates the presence of psilocybin. For instance, many boletes bruise blue and don't contain any psilocybin.

Here's a picture of an intensely blue staining bolete that does not have psilocybin:


I have to say, those are incredibly beautiful specimens. Do you know what species that is off hand?

Could be a neoboletus luridiformis with an unusually slim stem. In any case, I would say the color saturation in this picture is cranked up quite a bit.

You are probably right that they played with saturation here but I don't think by that much. I've seen boletes that look pretty close to that in person in the 5-10 seconds after you tear them.

Thats one of the helpful identifiers but not the end of the story. Its a useful puzzle piece

Always cook mushrooms, you can taste a little when out foraging to help identify but all mushrooms should be cooked (even lightly) before being consumed as food.

Magic mushrooms are consumed raw.

Even store-bought mushrooms should be cooked. There is some evidence that the common white button mushroom contains some carcinogens when raw.


(Note: other studies have concluded the dosage is too low for concern, the jury is still out)

But also, many kinds of bacteria can thrive in mushroom growing conditions - good idea to sterilize before you eat.

This is of interest to me. Could you recommend IL state booklet?

I'd recommend to go on facebook or just on the web and look for a local group related to foraging. Everyone there will know what the best books are for your region because 10 people probably join that group everyday and ask the same question and they will probably have a stock answer.

Check out Mushroom Observer[1], and use the map or search feature to find observations in your state. You can also search by genus or species.

[1] https://mushroomobserver.org/

Isn't mushroom picking something that requires rather more than a modicum of research upfront before any layman should attempt to do so because of the existence of poisonous mushrooms?

I mean, this feels eerily reminiscent of Google sending people up to the summit of Ben Nevis across dangerous terrain via a naive line connecting it to the geographically nearest car park.

This website does not seem to give any warnings about the risks involved; are there none? Although perhaps smoking (which I guess is what you do with these) may not kill you as much as eating a poisonous mushroom.

You're absolutely right, nobody should eat any mushroom if they are at all uncertain about its identity.

For now i've focused on where and when to look and steered clear of what to look for, partially due to liability concerns. So, right now, the map is mainly useful for people who already know what they are looking for (or are willing to do the research) rather than complete beginners. I may add a 'field guide' on identification with all the caveats in the near future though.

In France, pharmacists are trained and obligated by law to provide free mushroom identification to anyone. For this purpose, every pharmacy owns of very complete mushroom encyclopedias. I had good results in asking psilocibes IDing, but of course got some weird looks and strong recommendations not to consume them. Nobody called the cops.

They should be eaten not smoked. Yes you should do your research first. I would be pretty surprised if someone using this to find these mushrooms had not done some research first.

Yes, there are poisonous mushrooms that are eerily similar to mushrooms that contain psilocybin. [1] Depending on its stage of growth, they can be easily confused, especially by a newcomer.

There is one main rule to foraging. "Never eat a mushroom you can't positively identify." If any trait of it's appearance is questionable, don't eat it.

1: https://www.quora.com/Is-it-possible-to-confuse-psilocybin-m...

> eerily similar to mushrooms that contain psilocybin. [1]

The link says "Psilocybin mushrooms don’t look a lot like poisonous mushrooms. [...] So while it is possible, even a small amount of research will help you not to confuse them. :)".

This is inaccurate or out of date or both. Some species of Psilocybe look just like Galerina and sometimes grow right next to them.

Liberty caps are very distinctive and, at least where I live, don't grow near any dangerous mushrooms (open grassland / moor). Unless you were very indiscriminate the risks are very low, and since presumably pickers want the _correct_ mushroom some basic research is assumed.

Yes, all made worse by these apps that are available in the play or Apple App store that supposedly identify mushrooms for you. Do not go picking mushrooms without an expert or if you live in a country that offers mushroom inspection [2] use those and stay safe.

[1] https://www.srf.ch/news/panorama/vorsicht-lebensgefahr-pilz-...

[2] https://www.vapko.ch/de/

I would compare this website more to a very rough, speculative weather forecast. It might increase your chances to find psilocybe slightly, but not really.

My understanding is that fatalities from psilocybe (at least in Europe) happen, but are a small percentage of total fatalities, with other species such as amanita being several times more dangerous.

The risk would be consuming something that is not Psilocybe semilanceata, but poisonous enough to be lethal. Statistically, that wouldn't count as a fatality from it, but from whatever mushroom was consumed instead.

Should have been more precise, I meant fatalities from Psilocybe or little brown mushrooms that look like them.

Looking at statistics for a part of Germany (2006) again, there weren't actually any fatalities but 'only' cases of poisoning.

What it has done is surprise the hell out of me that it's worth looking for mushrooms at all in the park near me, and probably tipped me over the lip between "that's something Other People do" to "hmm, maybe I'll have a poke about next time I'm down there and see what I can see."

Not all amanita are dangerous.

True, Amanita phalloides specifically is the single most deadly mushroom at least in Germany according to (slightly dated) statistics.

I mean, this is considered a poisonous mushroom to most people.

I can appreciate that this site is using Mapbox and Plausible instead of giving out user data to Google

the basemap is from Carto, which uses a range of sources including OpenStreetMap and is missing required attribution: https://carto.com/attribution/ https://carto.com/help/working-with-data/attribution/#basema...

I sent the MMM guys/gals an email according to https://wiki.openstreetmap.org/wiki/Lacking_proper_attributi...

I just read about a harpsichordist who died eating mushrooms he thought were edible https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Johann_Schobert

Funny item in his wikipedia entry that Schobert was offended when Mozart's dad said his kids could play his music with ease.

Hi HN,

Liberty caps - or Psilocybe semilanceata - are a psilocybin-containing mushroom that grow naturally in many parts of the world. There is a lot of information online about where and when to look for liberty caps, but I wanted to see if data could help answer this question and boost people's chances of being in the right place at the right time.

To summarise how the map works: first, I matched the dates and coordinates of historical liberty cap growth records with data on habitat (e.g. land cover, elevation, soil acidity) and weather (e.g. temperature, rainfall). Second, I used this dataset to train a model describing the conditions in which liberty caps are more or less likely to thrive (for the statistically-inclined: kernel density estimation with model selection by maximum likelihood cross-validation). Finally, this model is used to make live predictions of the likelihood of liberty cap growth across the world on any given day.

For now, the map is limited to parts of Europe and North America (PNW + east coast of Canada) where liberty caps are known to grow.

I used the following data:

- Weather: ERA5 by ECMWF (historical) [1], GFS by NCEP (forecast) [2]

- Land cover: Corine Land Cover by Copernicus (Europe) [3], Land Cover by NALCMS (North America) [4]

- Soil acidity: SoilGrids by ISRIC [5]

- Elevation: SRTM by CGIAR [6]

- Growth records: Psilocybe Semilanceata by NBNAtlas [7]

[1] https://www.ecmwf.int/en/forecasts/datasets/reanalysis-datas...

[2] https://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/data-access/model-data/model-datas...

[3] https://land.copernicus.eu/pan-european/corine-land-cover

[4] http://www.cec.org/north-american-environmental-atlas/land-c...

[5] https://www.isric.org/explore/soilgrids

[6] https://bigdata.cgiar.org/srtm-90m-digital-elevation-databas...

[7] https://species.nbnatlas.org/species/NBNSYS0000021551

I found this map + twitter towards the end of last year (after the season had ended), so I'm looking forward to exploring in a few months to see how accurate it is.

I don't have much more to say - I just like niche mapping projects like this.

Congrats on launching the new features + new areas!

Thank you, and good luck out there!

I was wondering, if there is a reason, that britain has lots of areas with high propability and the mainland has not, but then I saw that the growth records [7] indeed only cover the british islands. So I suppose the data on the map is not really accurate as of now?

Otherwise what I would have expect from such a site, would be of course also detailed informations on how the mushrooms look exactly and where to look for them specifically. (And also a warning, that if you pick the wrong ones, you die a horrible death and even if you pick the right one, but are in the wrong mentally conditions, your are into horror either)

Anyway, your project is nice and your map inspired me to have a look in my area and see, if it matches your data.

The differences in the amount of areas across countries is mainly to do with differences in the amount of suitable grassland. For instance, in countries where lots of grassland has been turned into cropland there are fewer areas. In countries where grassland is dominated by, for instance, pastures there will be more areas.

Thanks for your feedback; i've been thinking of adding a field guide on identification. Also good luck hunting!

I think what you're doing is cool but maybe it would be a pretty essential feature to add an overlay map of distribution of lookalike species to preserve the health, safety and wellness of the users of your website.

Pholiotina rugosa has been spotted growing amoungst liberty caps, which contains some of the same deadly toxins in amanita species, as well as maybe others out there I'm not remembering offhand which could be mistaken (It's quite cosmopolitan in distribution in the northern hemisphere).

> [7] https://species.nbnatlas.org/species/NBNSYS0000021551

With data from GBIF you would have almost all of the British records published on the NBN Atlas (about 100 are not shared), plus 2,300 more from other sources.


Thank you for sharing! I'll look into this source in more detail.

Very cool! Is it true that they are this rare in North America? Only a small part of the Pacific Northwest and the east coast of Canada?

For liberty caps, yeah. There are some rare reports from other states in the US (mostly east coast) but I don't want to give people false hope by including those states in the map.

However, there are many other species of psilocybin-containing mushrooms in North America. You can check out the Shroomery for more info on species in your area [1]

[1] https://shroomery.org/12257/Mushroom-Locations

Wow, it's been ages since I've seen the shroomery.org domain. What a throwback.

Neat. I’d recommend looking into a hexagonal coordinate system. It has the benefit of each block being equidistant from its neighbors and clustering is a breeze. It also looks better. There’s a couple open source libraries Uber has that make it a breeze to work with.

Also all squares are the same screen size not taking projection distortion into account...

Thanks for the tip - i'll look into this.

My county has its own species apparently:


Am I the only one who finds the map difficult to read? The place-names and borders are almost invisible.

Also, pet peeve of mine with most maps-- when I zoom in so that I can see place names, the font gets smaller.

Do recent weather conditions matter? I always thought they were seasonal, we'd head up to a known spot where they grow in Wales shortly after the first dew of the year (Sept/Oct usually)

Depends where you live. In relatively dry areas they'll grow like crazy after a few days of rain. If you live in an already humid areas it would be less noticeable I guess.

Would this be feasible for normal (edible) mushroom species as well?

Some expensive (and delicious) varieties are quite rare, and a map using data like this could help perhaps.

> Would this be feasible for normal (edible) mushroom species as well?

It's possible, and would be useful, but generally not to the same extent. Many species of magic mushrooms have extremely precise weather triggers, whereas for most other species it's more like "go outside the 3rd week of July and look next to beech trees."

TIL there's a psylocibin strain native to Puerto Rico and Dominican Republic, apparently it's very potent: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Psilocybe_guilartensis

I don't feel like this could help you find the mushrooms. More like it can predict when they will grow in the places you know they could grow at?

Would love to see an animation over time after season. Or perhaps you could do that on older data? To see how it differs across location, whether there are more peaks, etc...

You can see some animations of the 2018 and 2019 seasons in the UK here: https://twitter.com/MushroomMap/status/1301047935203979264

Reminds me of what Terry Pratchett said "All mushrooms are edible, but some are only edible once."

I thought liberty caps needed a cold shock to get them fruiting, which is why we don't see them until Mid-late Autumn? Yet here it's suggesting now is a good time to pick across broad swathes of the North of England - when it's incredibly hot here in Blighty?

Strange that none was found in Brazil. I remember in the region of Sao Paulo and Rio de Janeiro (mostly Mountain Regions), after a nightly dew over the pastures, you could always find some magic Mushrooms, early in the morning.

None are charted for most countries of the world.

The data for the site is only from a few countries, primarily the UK.

> Growth records: Psilocybe Semilanceata by NBNAtlas (subset shared under CC-BY)


So I checked the mountain and field local to me where they grow every year without fail and it was only a "medium" likelihood :)

I'm not sure where you're located, but for most places it's a bit early in the season. I'd expect that location to shoot up to high likelihood through Sept-Oct.

It's worth pointing out that if you're in the UK, for reasons that I'm sure make sense to someone, magic mushrooms are very illegal. Courtesy of the Basement Project [1]:

* The 2005 Drugs Act amended the Misuse of Drugs Act 1971 to clarify that both fresh and prepared (e.g. dried or stewed) magic mushrooms that contain psilocin or psilocybin (such as the ‘liberty cap’) are Class A drugs. This means it’s illegal to have this type of ‘magic mushrooms’ for yourself, to give away or to sell

* Possession is illegal and can get you up to seven years in jail and/or an unlimited fine.

* Supplying someone else, even your friends, can get you up to life imprisonment and/or an unlimited fine.

[1] https://thebasementproject.org.uk/guidance-addiction/guidanc...

I'd be curious to read some reliable statistics on how many people in the UK (and the US) actually get arrested for picking wild psilocybin mushrooms.

Applications are open for YC Winter 2022

Guidelines | FAQ | Lists | API | Security | Legal | Apply to YC | Contact