Multigoblet Slime Mold - Metatrichia vesparium
Stunning, fluffy, bright red spore masses with tiny, empty red goblets that were only about 0.5 mm wide. Including the spore masses, they were about 3-5mm tall. The sporangia clusters resemble paper wasp nests.
Initially, these clusters would have been black and shiny, but these had already opened leaving the empty red goblets with fluffy, red spore masses above.
I found this slime mold growing on decayed wood in a mostly deciduous forest with lots of oak, birch, and hemlock. We got 8 inches of snow yesterday, and this slime mold really stood out with its vibrant color!
Fruiting body a stalked (or rarely sessile) sporangium, gregarious to clustered, 1.0–1.5 mm tall. Sporotheca obovate, usually firmly united into clusters, erect, wine-red to dark maroon or sometimes nearly black, individual units 0.4–0.7 mm in diameter. Hypothallus membranous, contiguous for a group of sporangia, colourless to dark red. Peridium opaque, firm, shining, often with metallic reflections, dehiscence by a preformed dome-shaped operculum. Stalk solid, rather thick when supporting several.. more