Cornell University

Fungi on Science Friday!

The small world of a bird’s nest fungus, Crucibulum laeveWe all know that fungi are cool, and we are all baffled and saddened that they just don’t get enough press. Well that’s all changed now. I was on National Public Radio last week, talking fungus on the venerable show Science Friday. David Fischer joined me to field calls, and there were feature interviews with Kelli Hoover (who discovered a yeast symbiont in the bellies of Asian longhorn beetles), and Arturo Casadevall (coauthor of the hot American Academy of Microbiology colloquium paper, The Fungal Kingdom: Diverse and Essential Roles in Earth’s Ecosystem).

You can listen to the Sept 12 show here.

and earlier in the show, Gavin Sherlock on the hybrid origins of lager yeasts.

Also, check out the Sci Fri video, which features MSA President, Roy Halling, along with a couple of our own timeless time lapse videos:

(having trouble with the video? view it on the Science Friday website)

Curious about my gratuitous photo? It’s a tiny civilization: the bird’s nest fungus Crucibulum laeve growing on a single, squirrel-chewed butternut, with a leaf as a flag. The bird’s nests are young and have yet to shed the membrane covering the little spore-packet “eggs.” George Barron will show you how they’ll look when ripe and waiting for raindrops.



6 Responses to “ Fungi on Science Friday! ”


Most people don't pay much attention to fungi, which include things like mushrooms, molds, yeasts, and mildews. Here at Cornell we think they're pretty fascinating. In fact, even the most disgusting foot diseases and moldy strawberries are dear to our hearts. We'd like to talk to you about fungi, so that like us, you too can tell gross stories at the dinner table. Afterwards, maybe you'll notice some things you would have overlooked before, and we think this could be good for the planet.

Kathie T. Hodge, Editor

Beneath Notice, our book of borescopic mycology.


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