National Mushroom Hunting Day
annually on May 17th (since 2014)
National Mushroom Hunting Day was created for mushroom lovers, chefs in high-end restaurants, and fans of the great outdoors alike. All have been known to hunt for wild mushrooms in locations like forests, woods, orchards, and fields. For some, mushroom hunting is a yearly tradition, and for others, it is even a profession. Mushroom hunting goes by other names such as mushroom foraging, mushroom picking, or simply, mushrooming.
Many safe mushrooms look similar to those that are not. It is imperative that edible mushrooms are distinguished from poisonous ones when mushroom hunting, and above all, safety should be practiced. Those new to hunting can use a field guide or phone app to help them with identification or can go hunting with a seasoned hunter, who knows where and when to find mushrooms, and which ones are edible. Some commonly hunted edible wild mushrooms are the morel, black trumpet, porcini (including the much-sought-after king bolete), matsutake, chanterelle, pine mushroom, oyster mushroom, puffball, polypore, and sulphur shelf, which is also known as the chicken mushroom or chicken of the woods. Hunters find these and other wild edible mushrooms on National Mushroom Hunting Day!
How to Observe National Mushroom Hunting Day
Celebrate the day by mushroom hunting! As there are many poisonous and inedible mushrooms, make sure you know what you are looking for before you head out. Some books like 100 Edible Mushrooms, The Complete Mushroom Hunter, and the National Audubon Society Field Guide to North American Mushrooms may be useful for preparation and in the field. Downloading a mushroom identifying app such as Roger's Mushrooms App is another way to make sure you are prepared to hunt. You also may want to pick up a container to put your mushrooms in. Woven baskets and mesh bags are useful for this purpose. After you gather your mushrooms, it will be time to cook them! Pick up a cookbook or two or find some wild edible mushroom recipes online, of which there are many.