This Mycology Monday I would like to reacquaint you with Paul Stamets. Each week I will include a link to this video. I think it is the key to curing the world of mycophobia. And I’m a science groupie. I can’t get enough of these guys!
Between him and Paul Wheaton I’m starting to think that I have “a type.” Good thing I’ve got Bryan around to skew the statistics.
In the news, unlike the video about that many many people I know have seen, there was a tidbit that circulated a long time ago that I found fascinating. It speaks to the truth that fungus could very well be the savior of our world.
Chernobyl Fungus Feeds On Radiation
Researchers at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine (AEC) have found evidence that certain fungi possess another talent beyond their ability to decompose matter: the capacity to use radioactivity as an energy source for making food and spurring their growth.
Detailing the research inPublic Library of Science ONE, AEC’s Arturo Casadevall said his interest was piqued five years ago when he read about how a robot sent into the still-highly-radioactive Chernobyl reactor had returned with samples of black, melanin-rich fungi that were growing on the ruined reactor’s walls. “I found that very interesting and began discussing with colleagues whether these fungi might be using the radiation emissions as an energy source,” explained Casadevall. (continue reading here)
They may not move as quickly as we would like them to, but they really are just in there to clean the place up. Mama Earth’s very efficient maid service.
So next time you are freaking out at the crazy fuzzy fungi growing on that unrecognizable mass in a ziploc container at the back of your refrigerator, remember that is just your Mama (Earth) trying to clean out your refrigerator for you.
I can’t resist the temptation to tell you that my mother accomplishes this much faster when she comes to visit with a trash can and a some disinfectant. (Thanks, Mom!) In the race between Mom and mushrooms she definitely comes out on top. But as much as I believe in her cleaning superpowers I would not send her into a Chernobyl reactor. Win the battle lose the war, Mom. Sorry. Mushrooms have more superpowers than you. (You still give better hugs.)
Come back next Monday to see what weirdness I can come up with in the world of Mycology.
❤ Sasha Lynn