Scientific name: Cyathus olla (Batsch) Persoon
Derivation of name: Oll- means "pot" or "jar."
Common name(s): Gray bird's nest.
Occurrence on wood substrate: Saprobic; clustered on
organic debris, wood, wood chips, old corn husks, etc.;
Dimensions: Fruitbodies are up to 1.5 cm tall and 1 cm wide.
Sterile nest surfaces: Outside surface brownish,
finely hairy or
textured but not
wooly, becoming smooth and gray in
gray to dull black. Margin of nest
Fertile tissue: The peridioles are gray to brown or blackish
and 2-3.5 mm wide.
Edibility: Not edible.
This bird's nest fungus has exceptionally large
More information at RogersMushrooms.com:
Cyathus olla fruiting bodies. Note the flaring (like
a trumpet) rim
of the nest. Can you see three peridioles on
the nearby plant? Photo © John Dawson.
Figure 2. Note the large peridioles and wavy
Photo © George Barron.
Figure 3. Several nests with peridioles splashed out. Note
cordlike structures attached to the peridioles on the left.
cord is called the funiculus or funicular cord. Photo ©
Figure 4. These peridioles were splashed out of the nests
shown in Figure 1 and onto the nearby plant. The trailing,
adhesive funicular cords stick to plants, causing the
to wrap around the plant part. The white
of the peridiole in the
upper left of the picture is
wrapped around the stem. Photo © John Dawson.