Biodiversity of the Far North conference

Komi Republics borders Yugra from the West, the border lies through the mountain range of Northern Ural and two regions have many historical connections and geographical similarities. Going to see many more about the region with my eyes soon, participating in a conference on “Biodiversity of ecosystems of the Far North: inventory, monitoring, conservation”. The program includes broad spectrum of presentations discussed in five sections: about vegetation; floras (including fungi) and faunas, conservation and soil science of Northern Regions. Plus three round tables on important issues of vegetation classification, global climate changes and education in Northern Biodiversity science.

More about the conference (and electronic theses) here:

We have recently finished our annual work on historical review of mycological studies in Yugra + publication of Fungal Records Database of Yugra in GBIF and thus, it will be the topic of my presentation. It will include introduction on importance of biodiversity data bases, their standards and present global repositories. The history of research of fungi in Yugra will go then: a mushroom-shaped cloud of words should revive the story :). And our steps of creating a regional database + making it available to the broad community through GBIF will be in conclusion.

The presentation with the report (pdf, in Russian).

The conference’ symbol is the Northern most delicious berry – Cloudberry (Rubus chamaemorus); also tastes nice for fungi as at least 21 species are growing as saprotrophs on its litter. Including very beautiful Rutstroemia chamaemori, Hyaloschypha fuscostipitata and others. Northern biodiversity is really undiscovered and flourishes secretly in our regions :).

A cloud of words that resulted from the analysis of the Titles of mycological publications in Yugra.

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Traditional art and culture congress

Tried to make connection between the traditional crafts and biodiversity studies today, at the International congress of Traditional art and culture in Khanty-Mansiysk, the section on Methods and technologies of reconstruction of the archaeological and ethnographic heritage.

The cause of building such a distant bridge was our interest in fungal dyes and how they could be used by artists and craftsmans in the region. The presentation seems to sparked interest in the audience (few have ever heard about this technology before). I promised our help in ID and any related studies of dyeing species, so hope that there could be some collaborative work in the future. And i was also amazed by how many craft technologies are studied and developed in our region, like weaving, pottery, jewelry, making traditional clothes, rugs and many others.

Our presentation with the report (Pdf) (The benefits of biodiversity studies for the revival of traditional crafts: obtaining natural dyes from mushrooms in Yugra) (in Russian).

Link to the Congress Program.


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Corticolous myxomycetes inventory

This bark could look abandoned and clean, but if one will take its samples, cultivate them in wet chambers and then learn one-selves to be a specialist in Corticolous Myxomycetes, this would make a difference. As there is a whole community of these tiny creatures, currently in dormant stage but will thrive in wet warm conditions of a chamber. The tree species, size and age matters; as well as vegetation type, bark exposition, and height – all forming different composition of myxo-communities.

Thus, i am involved in an inventory of Corticolous Myxomycetes in our location. A specialist in this group from Novosibirsk botanical garden asked my help as a samples collector; which means wandering through forests from tree to tree with an ax .. gently scratching some pieces of the tree’s bark.

Also wrote a formula of such collaborative work borrowing Remote Access term from INTERACT language (

An album where all photos of sampling in the field collected:

Pinus sylvestris bark
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Myco-Library Autumn update

The last time i published our Mycological Library update was last spring and after half of year we have some new comers. Not many, but interesting and specific books.

Four Conference Proceedings are here from meetings in Moscow, Zvenigorod and in Irkuts.

An excellent guide on plant-pathogenic fungi for students, describing mycobiota of this important group nearby Zvenigorod field station of MSU, by Ekaterina Blagoveschenskaya.

An excellent summary of Polypore fungi inventory made by a collective of mycologists during a workshop in Central Forest reserve (with a simple key for this group, was already helpful to me in the field!).

And lastly, two sources about Fungal Dyes by Miriam Rice: a CD and a book about dyeing, making paper from polypores and making paints from mushrooms.
The library is opened to all curious!

An Autumn update in our Mycolibrary

+ one extra for the smallest ones 🙂

+ one nice extra to MycoLib :)

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A conference nearby Baykal lake

The community of botanists of Russia is going to meet soon in Irkutsk, East Siberia, at the bank of beautiful Baykal lake and at the foothills of East Sayan mountains for a regular conference “Problems of studying and preserving the plant world of Eurasia” ( The conference is dedicated to a bryologist, a specialist in floristics and biogeography of East Siberia Bardunov Leonid Vladimirovich. A genus of green moss named Bardunovia is related to this researcher.

Probably too beautiful place for a scientific conference.. as it would be difficult to concentrate on work:) Anyhow, there are 7 sections including one dedicated to Cryptogamic biota, e.g. mosses, fungi and algae.

My presentation will be about fruiting dynamics and community structure of macromycetes of the oligotrophic bog. I will relate the study of vegetation (plant communities) and fungal communities and discuss the differences and general methods used to describe community structure and composition when studying macrofungi. And show our results of community structure and dynamics revealed during four (actually 3,5) years of plot-observations. This time period allowed to reveal some unvariable characteristics of composition and quantitative structure, but also the seasonal and inter annual dynamics of number of species, total productivity and abundance.

The presentation with the text is available in pdf (in Russian).

Another reason to visit Irkutsk is to become acquainted with my 3-week Tardigrade-looking niece. My sister was studying water bears there and her baby looks like them, what a coincidence! 🙂



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Preparing to the Mushroom Festival 2017

Another autumn is coming and our annual Mushroom Festival opening soon. Colleagues from the Museum of Man and Nature are busy this week preparing the exhibitions, workshops and mushroom forays. I miss this time not participating in the event this year, but thanks to Tanya and Eugenia we’ve made two posters: “Edible and Poisonous mushroom species” and “Mushrooms for natural dyes”. Zhenya will also present a workshop on dyeing with fungi at the Mushroom Festival, showing the dyeing process, our previous results and teaching the basics of dyeing. I hope that the event will collect many interested people and wish to everyone to enjoy it!

Poster prepared to Mushroom Festival in Museum of Nature and Man in Khanty-Mansiysk

Poster prepared to Mushroom Festival in Museum of Nature and Man in Khanty-Mansiysk

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After the conference “Species concept in Fungi..”

Five days of the conference “Species concept in Fungi…” is over and i am back with good memories and small souvenir collection of specimens. The conference was held at the biological station of Moscow State University in Zvenigorod, a beautiful place with protected sector of forest. The forest has interesting composition of conifers plus broadleaf trees: linden, maple, oak all unfamiliar to me and surprising. We were foraying each early morning and after-supper time, searching for interesting species and then swimming in fresh waters of Moscow river. One species from our collection is supposed to be a new for the macrofungi checklist of the station (so, we did not swim in vain). There was also one full day of field excursions with subsequent fungal exhibition, an excellent species diversity was presented on the table and wonderful comments accompanied by.

But, the main part of the meeting were lectures dedicated to molecular systematics and phylogeny of fungi in general and different groups in particular. Thus, mycologists are no more relying upon their eyes but use molecular techniques plus complex mathematical analyses for species systematics. And our eyes (and morphological characters) could say anything reliable about evolutionary process. Of course this is not news, but I still do not use these methods and working in traditional way. It is no use to die like a dinosaurs.. unless it would not be important from some other side of coin:) like ecology, or some practical reasons. But better to have different tools for exploring the world.

A conference proceedings are under the link (in Russian)
and my photo-memories uploaded to our album.
+ a collection from 30 specimens stored in our fungarium.

During fungal exhibition
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