Endangered under B2a & b, Critically endangered under D1
Fruiting body: more or less oval with a flat top or depression, sides and base distinctly sulcate/fluted; 40 - 45 mm diameter; fawn and glabrous in central depression, sides velutinous, grey then darkening, base remaining white.
Rhizoid: tapering towards base; 12 - 15 mm at apex, 3 mm near base × 25 - 45 mm tall; tough, irregular surface with encrusted dirt; possibly attached to buried wood.
Hymenium: loculate; irregular; white; with central columella.
Flesh: white, firm.
Spore print: not obtained but thought to be white.
Spores: globose; 15.5 - 24.5 × 17 - 25.5; smooth; thick walled; with rounded globules (at × 1000) but turbinate structures cannot be seen with the light microscope.
Basidia: clavate with very short sterigmata; 2-spored.
Cheilocystidia: very varied in shape, but including langeniform and subcapitate cystidia which appear to be confined to this species.
Pleurocystidia: not observed.
Pileipellis: a hymenium with thick walled clavate terminal cells.
Habitat: growing on the ground in a dry rainforest environment with Atalaya salicifolia (whitewood).
Secotoid fungi represent an important part of the funga of Australia and this species is both rare and distinctive. It also benefits from having an excellent modern description that will allow any finds to be identified with confidence.
Current known sites are in recreational areas which do not have explicit conservation protection for fungi.
Only known from Australia.
Cribbea turbinospora is a wood decaying fungus that is found attached to buried wood. It is exceedingly difficult to judge its generation length. Reports suggest it is attached to rapidly decaying wood so a 30 year generational interval might be appropriate. There are four severely fragmented populations in North Queensland, South east Queensland, South Australia and Tasmania. The population of functional individuals is <10. This species is recently described so all the observations have been made within the last 20 years.
The habitat requirements of this taxon are not well documented. It has to be noted that there have not been any repeat collections at known sites. There is some suggestion that it may occur in disturbed sites.
Land clearance, fire, climate warming and increasingly severe weather events such as droughts and inundations have been identified at all the sites where this species is known. The recreational sites are subject to improvements such as the building of car parks. The type locality has had a toilet block built over it.
This species is not protected at any of its current locations. It is deemed to be of least concern by the Queensland Government
The biology of this fungus is not well understood, that needs to be clarified both to allow appropriate conservation action to be taken and to focus attention on other possible locations at which it might be found.
Atlas of Living Australia (2019):https://biocache.ala.org.au/occurrences/search?
Coger, H., Ford, H, Johnson, C.’ Holman, J. & Butler D. (2003). Impacts of Land Clearing on Wildlife in Queensland. World Wildlife Fund.
Dahlberg A. and Mueller G.M. (2011) Applying IUCN red-listing criteria for assessing and reporting on the conservation status of fungal species. Fungal Ecology 4: 147-162.
Geospatial Conservation Assessment Tool: geocat.kew.org
Global Biodiversity Information Facility: gbif.org
Lebel T & Catcheside P (2009).The truffle genus Cribbea (Physalacriaceae, Agaricales) in Australia. Australian Systematic Botany 22, 39 – 55.
Neldner, V.J., M.J. Laidlaw, K.R. McDonald, M.T. Mathieson, R.I. Melzer, R. Seaton, W.J. F. McDonald, R. Hobson, and C.J. Limpus (2017). Scientific review of the impacts of land clearing on threatened species in Queensland. Queensland Government, Brisbane.