Toxic mushrooms thrive in Oak Bay

Parks staff pluck 1,000 death caps from public spaces

Toxic mushrooms thrive on Oak Bay boulevards.

Parks removed about 1,000 of the potentially deadly “death cap” mushrooms since they first popped up in July this year. They’ve grown in Oak Bay since 1998.

“This is the first year we’ve really found them in numbers, like we have this year,” said Chris Hyde-Lay, Manager of Parks Services for Oak Bay. “The numbers are up considerably from what we remember, but that could partly be because we started to go and look for them.”

The mushrooms, first documented in Oak Bay in 1998, which usually grow in urban areas in Victoria and were first introduced on the root systems of non-native trees, tend to spring up around fall following the first set of rains. The fungus showed up early this summer, attributed to regular irrigation.

“If you just leave them alone they’re harmless, but some people may mistake them (for other mushrooms),” Hyde-Lay said. “It’s a cardinal rule with most mushroom pickers that you know what you’re picking.”

The death cap mushroom — or Amanita phalloide — attacks the liver, kidney and other organs and causes nausea, vomiting, low blood pressure, dizziness, and liver and kidney failure. In October last year, a three-year-old Victoria boy died after eating the same kind of mushroom. It was the first recorded death from a death cap mushroom in the province.

Experts say residents should avoid the fungus, which looks similar to a puffball mushroom when first pushing through the ground.

“Use caution, know what you’re doing, the municipality knows where they are in the neighbourhood and we’re trying to keep populations down,” Hyde-Lay said.


 

@OakBayNews
cvanreeuwyk@oakbaynews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

UPDATE: Crash knocks out power to parts of Saanich

Power outage results in stores at Uptown being closed Saturday morning

Rogue masseur arrested for sexual assault in Victoria

John Heintzelman, 65, is accused of assaulting a person at his former business, James Bay Massage

Hey Amazon, the bid’s in the mail: Langford mayor

The City of Langford has officially submitted its bid to become the home of Amazon HQ2.

WEEKEND HITS: Here’s what’s happening in Sooke this weekend

Looking for something to do over the next few days. Here are… Continue reading

‘Think of me’ puts human face to speeding

Children’s illustrations deliver a plea to speeding drivers

VIDEO: Sears liquidation sales continue across B.C.

Sales are expected to continue into the New Year

New B.C. acute care centre opens for young patients, expectant mothers

Facility aims to make B.C. Children’s Hospital visits more comfortable

Search ramps up for B.C. woman after dog, car found near Ashcroft

Jenny Lynn Larocque’s vehicle and dog were found in Venables Valley, but there is no sign of her

Event puts pets in the picture for Halloween

Pets West holding Halloween party Oct. 29 at its Broadmead Village location

Police officer hit by car, stabbed in Edmonton attack back on job

Const. Mike Chernyk, 48, returned to work Thursday

UBC medical students learn to care for Indigenous people

Students in health-related studies to take course, workshop to help better serve Aboriginal people

Dorsett has 2 goals, assist in Canucks’ 4-2 win over Sabres

‘It was a real good hockey game by our group,’ Canucks coach Travis Green said.

Berry disappointed: Bear tries to eat fake fruit on woman’s door wreath

A Winnipeg woman has taken her berry-embellished wreath down, after a hungry bear visited her porch

Man in custody linked police search near Salmon Arm

Police have not connected arrest to search at Salmon River Road property

Most Read