Described based on an Idaho, USA Type collection (Hesler & Smith 1979).
The Alaskan Lactarius pallescens var. palmerensis (Hesler & Smith 1979) is likely a distinct species, and is not included in this assessment.
Reports on Mushroom Observer and Mycoportal (2021) from eastern North America appear to be misidentifications.
Lactarius pallescens is a locally common milk cap, occurring over a widespread area, with both conifers and hardwoods in western North America.
Population is widespread, and no decline has been observed. We recommend it should be listed as Least Concern (LC)
Northern California in coastal forests, throughout the Pacific Northwest in coastal, Coast Range and Cascade forests, east into the Rocky Mountains north into central British Columbia, Canada, possibly into Alaska.
Population is widespread, and locally quite common; appears to be stable; no decline has been noted.
Population Trend: Stable
Ectomycorrhizal with a wide number of both conifers and hardwoods. in the southern portions of its range has been found with oaks (Quercus spp), but more often with conifers, especially with hemlock (Tsuga spp.) and fir (Abies spp.). Locally common, fruiting in fall.
No specific threats have been identified with regards to this species.
No specific conservation actions is needed with regards to this species.
Investigate ‘fringe’ populations (ie . California oak associated collections, Alaska collections) with modern taxonomic tools.
Hesler, L.R. and Smith, A.H. 1979. North American Species of Lactarius. University of Michigan Press: Ann Arbor, MI. 841 p.
iNaturalist. 2021. Available at: http://www.inaturalist.org
Methven, A.S. 1997. The Agaricales (Gilled Fungi) of California. 10. Russulaceae II. Lactarius. Mad River Press: Eureka, CA. 79 p.
Mushroom Observer. 2021. http://www.mushroomobserver.org
MyCoPortal. 2021. http://mycoportal.org/portal/index.php. Accessed on January 11.
Siegel, N. and Schwarz, C. 2016. Mushrooms of the Redwood Coast. Ten Speed Press: Berkeley, CA. 601 p.