Parasitic Fungus - Hypomyces hyalinus
These Amanita mushrooms were being attacked by a parasitic fungus, Hypomyces hyalinus. This fungus completely disfigures its host. The infection prevents the expansion of the cap, and causes the cap to fuse to the stem. As a result, the gills are also destroyed and the fruiting body dies without dispersing any spores.
Habitat: Mixed forest
''Hypomyces hyalinus'' is a species of parasitic fungi that attacks fungi of the genus ''Amanita''. The earliest recording of this parasite was in 1822 in Salem, North Carolina, but microscopic descriptions of ''H.hyalinus'' do not appear in the literature until 1886.