Saturday, August 6, 2022

Don't Eat or Even Touch Red Fungus


In the month of July, more sightings of the deadly poison fire coral fungus have been reported in Kanagawa, Chiba, and Fukui prefectures. This is the second deadliest fungal species in the world and is known as Posion Fire Coral in English and Kaentake (fire mushroom) in Japanese. As interesting as it looks, don't even think about eating it. It contains several trichothecene myotoxins that are lethal to humans. In 1999 a man in Niigata Prefecture died after eating one or two grams soaked in sake and in 2000 a man in Gunma Prefecture died after eating the mushroom fried. 

If you eat it, symptoms range from stomach aches and vomiting to peeling skin, hair loss, decreases in white blood cells and platelets, organ failure, and decrease in motor functions, speech, and perceptions due to shrinking of the cerebellum.  This fungus actually shrinks your brain. Even just touching the poison fire coral causes rashes, swelling, and skin irritation. 

So, don't touch it and especially don't eat it! I hope I never see it, but if I do, I won't go near it.


diamondc said...

Pamela: I have never heard of this fungus, scares me so much, I hope no one touches it or even looks at it.
Oh my gosh in the 90s today with storms coming.


Queeniepatch said...

It will be hard for many hikers with little knowledge of fungi to stay away. I can almost hear: 'Wow! Look at that. Isn't that a cool thing? What is it? Let's pick it!' Those hikers will get away with a fiery skin rash. I just hope no one will add: 'Let's take it home and cook it!'

I too, hope never to come in contact with one. Stay safe!

Vireya said...

Fascinating! At least it doesn't look like an edible mushroom. From time to time we have people poisoning themselves, sometimes fatally, by eating death-cap mushrooms which are hard to tell from normal edible mushrooms.