Geoglossum atropurpureum

Range & Status

Dark purple to brownish tongue-like fungus emerging from the soil in acid grassland. Only known from two sites in Cornwall: acid grassland on mine spoil at Phoenix United Mine at Minions on Bodmin Moor. Here the fungus can be quite numerous, in clusters, during certain years. This site is a SSSI partly because of the presence of Cornish Pathmoss Ditrichum cornubicum , however, landscaping exercises could threaten the fungus. The fungus has also been recorded, as solitary specimens, rather unusually growing in grassland overlying ultramafic serpentine at Kynance Cove (The National Trust and a NNR) on the Lizard Peninsula. Serpentine rock, and the soil derived from it, does however contain relative high amounts of the ' heavy' metals chromium, cobalt and nickel. The two Cornish sites should be subject to survey and monitoring and be protected against habitat loss and degradation. G. atropurpureum is a UK BAP List Priority Species which is internationally threatened.