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Additional recommended knowledge
The evolutionary benefit of a stipe is generally considered to be in mediating spore dispersal. An elevated mushroom will more easily release its spores into wind currents or onto passing animals. Nevertheless, many mushrooms do not have stipes, including: cup fungi, puffballs, earthstars, some polypores, jelly fungi, ergots, and smuts.
It is often the case that features of the stipe are required to make a positive identification of a mushroom. Such distinguishing characters include:
When collecting mushrooms for identification it is critical to maintain all these characters intact by digging the mushroom out of the soil, rather than cutting it off mid-stipe.
|This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Stipe_(mycology)". A list of authors is available in Wikipedia.|