Thuemenidium sp. “Australasia” is here used for specimens identified from Australasia as Thuemenidium berteroi (Mont.) Gamundi (= Geoglossum berteroi (Mont.) Colenso). The latter is based on a type from Chile. Australasian material under this name is considered to be phylogenetically distinct from T. berteroi (fide PR Johnston), with designation as a new species pending further studies.
From Australia, Mitrula vinosa, with a type from Tasmania, is also considered to be synonymous. Spooner (1987) noted morphological differences in stipe microstructure between the type specimen of M. vinosa and Gamundi’s description of T. berteroi, and suggested that T. berteroi may belong in a genus separate from Thuemenidium on the basis of ascospore septation and size, and its lignicolous habit.
This species is known from one New Zealand specimen (1880s?), and two Tasmanian collections (1800s? undated; and 2015). Until recently Australasian material was identified as Thuemenidium berteroi (Mont.) Gamundi, but this South American speceis is considered to be phylogenetically distinct. There has been active Geoglossaceae, & Hypocreaceae collecting over recent decades in New Zealand, with no material located for well over a century.
This appears to be an Australasian taxon restricted to New Zealand and the state of Tasmania, Australia. There is only a single specimen from New Zealand, collected by Colenso near Norsewood, Hawkes Bay, during 1880s(?) but date unknown. Fromr Australia, there is an undated type of Mitrula vinosa (synonym) from Tasmania, and PDD 107559, from Tasmania, Arve Valley, Lower Kermadec Falls Tr., 2015.
Thuemenidium berteroi, the name previously used for Australasian material, is known from several collections from Argentina and Chile.
There has been active collecting of Geoglossaceae, Hypocreaceae, etc in New Zealand for the past 40 years, without locating any specimens during that time. Ascocarps are described as 2-3 cm high (Spooner 1987).
On dead, sometimes rotten, wood or logs
Loss of habitat. Colenso’s collection (the only New Zealand specimen known) was from Norsewood - then (1880s?) surrounded by forested habitat, since completely converted to pasture.
Confirm phylogenetic separation of Australasian and South American material, and genetic similarity between New Zealand and Tasmanian specimens.
Gamundi, IJ 1976. Subantarctic Geoglossaceae. Kew Bull. 31:731-739. (re. Thuemenidium berteroi (Mont.) Gamundí)
Spooner, B.M. 1987: Helotiales of Australasia: Geoglossaceae, Orbiliaceae, Sclerotiniaceae, Hyaloscyphaceae. Bibliotheca Mycologica 116;
Colenso, W. 1887 : An enumeration of Fungi recently discovered in New Zealand, with brief notes on the species novae. Transactions and Proceedings of the New Zealand Institute 19: 301–313 [record only, no description etc]