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Gymnopilus

Field characters

Pileus: convex, usually brightly colored
Annulus: usually present either as a cortina or a membranous veil
Stipe: usually yellow in color, slightly eccentric
Stature: Tricholomatoid, Naucorioid, Clitocyboid
Ecology: on wood (in this area)

Micro characters

Basidiospores: finely ornamented (seen best in KOH) with double wall, no germ pore, dextrinoid
Cystidia: cheilocystidia always present. Pleurocystidia sometimes present.
Spore Print: usually bright orange-reddish-brown, sometimes more dull
Lamellae: adnexed to adnate, colored
Lamellar Trama: regular

Notes

This is an easy genus to recognize. They can be confused with Cortinarius and Pholiota, but Cortinarii grow on the ground, and Pholiotae usually have a viscid (or scaly) pileus and duller brown spores (Arora, 1986). The brightly colored gills are a pretty good field indicator.
There are seventy species in North America. A hydroxide applied to the surface of the cap yields a blackish coloration (Bessette et al., 1997)