A team of scientists from India and China out on a fungal foray was left spellbound by a spectacular sight in the Meghalaya forests. During the month of the monsoon, the scientists discovered glowing mushrooms in the East Khasi Hills district and West Jaintia Hills district of Meghalaya. They had heard reports about ‘electric mushrooms’ from the locals. After they reached the West Jaintia Hills District, a native guided them to the bamboo forest. The person asked the scientists to switch off their torches. Just around a minute later, the dark forest gleamed up with mesmerising green lights, emerging from the bamboo sticks. They were a unique variety of mushroom, known as Roridomyces phyllostachydis. Read on to know more.
Locals Use These Mushroom Stalks As ‘Natural Torches’
Scientists have discovered scintillating bioluminescent mushrooms in Meghalaya. The first of them were spotted in a moist August in Mawlynnong, East Khasi Hills district. Later, they were also sighted West Jaintia Hills district’s Krang Shuri. The scientists have found that only the stalks of these mushrooms emitted light. The locals even use the stalks as natural torches to make way through the dark forests at night. Meanwhile, did you know about this Glowing Forest In India Near Goa?
The Mushrooms Grow Only On Dead Bamboos
According to The Sentinel report, senior mycologist at the Chinese Academy of Sciences, Samantha Karunarathna, said, “The members of the genus Roridomyces are very fragile and they love moist and humid conditions”. Karunarathna added, “In general, bioluminescent mushrooms seem to have co-evolved together with some specific insects as these mushrooms attract insects to disperse their spores.” According to research, the mushrooms grow only on dead bamboos. During the day, they look nothing more than ordinary with caps of around 3mm to 15mm diameter. At night, they glow beautifully in green.