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Cortinarius cinnabarinus

English Name: Cinnabar Webcap (provisional) 
(other scientific names Dermocybe cinnabarina

The genus Cortinarius is one of the most numerous groups of fungi on the planet - maybe that is why most of us avoid trying to identify them particularly when placed in the subgenus Telamonia (Telamonia have dry cap and stem, the sticky capped species in subgenus Phlegmacium are just about doable as are the sticky cap and stem species in subgenus Myxacium). There are some though that once seen are never forgotten and this stunningly coloured species is just one such. Its specific names given for the likeness of the fruit body colour to the vermilion colours of the mineral cinnabar. The colour is almost fluorescent on fresh, young material.
The genus name comes from the cobwebby partial veil - the cortina - that in part characterises the genus. Until very recently it could be said that all members of the genus had a cortina and rusty brown spores. These days, following the inability of molecular studies to find any significant differences, the single species genus Rozites (i.e. Rozites caperatus The Gypsy), has been included within  despite having a membranous partial veil!More information on the different divisions within the kingdom of the fungi.


Recorded from August through to November, the majority of records are from September and October.


In general this species is thought to associate with beech and in my experience, the soils have been mull bown soils.


The Checklist gives this as present throughout but frequency unknown. In Scotland it is rarely recorded but widespread with records from Mull, Tayside, the Central Highlands and most recently (and not shown yet on the map to the right) from Reelig Glen north of Inverness.

Please remember to submit your records to your local recording group or via the Scottish Fungi online recording form.

Cortinarius cinnabarinus from Killiecrankie above (photo R. Goodison). Showing the stunning colours throughout . Below in Reelig Glen (photo Liz Holden)                                      
Cortinarius cinnabarinus photo R. Goodison

the east (or indeed the west) coast this species can be found.

Cortinarius cinnabarinus

The National Biodiversity Network Gateway records from FRDBI andHBRG  datasets are shown on the above map (see terms and conditions at http://data.nbn.org.uk). Data providers and the NBN Trust bear no responsibility for any further analysis or interpretation of the information in the map.