Insiticia flavovirens is found in a narrow arc across the north of North Island from the Urewera National Park in the East to Auckland in the west. It is known to grow on tree ferns but there seem to be doubt as to the specificity of the host. There are four main locations for the fungus: Urewera National Park, Manawhatai, Kamai-Mamaku Forest Park and forest sites around Auckland. In total 20 groups of this fungus have been found and we have chosen to count each group as 2 functional individuals giving a population of 40 spread over four localities. Although this is a brightly coloured and relatively easy fungus to recognize, we think there may be as many as ×2 undiscovered sites which would suggest a population of 80 spread over 8 locations. The quality of the habitat appears to be declining due to feral animals and weather events. The extent of occurrence data suggest that the species might be vulnerable. The area of occupancy suggests a higher category, but we believe that vulnerable might best reflect the current risk for this species. B1, B2 a & b and D1.
Insiticia flavovirens Horak ex Segedin (1987)
A well defined fungus which has been recorded as Mycena flavovirens by some mycologists so those records must also be checked.
Proposed by Pat Leonard. Distinctive species known from 15 records across North island. A single SI collection requires confirmation and is currently excluded. Extent of Occurrence 8578.00 km2 Area of Occupancy 44.000 km2
Appears to be restricted to the North Island of New Zealand.
This fungus is restricted to high rainfall forests that contain tree ferns, notably Cyathea. There have been seven collections over the past 50 years.
Although fallen Cyathea trunks can be covered in sporocarps we have followed Dahlberg and Mueller’s advice and allocated 2 mature individuals per fallen trunk. That produces a population of only 15 at four locations. Cyathea is widely distributed in North Island so we might expect there to be more sites for this fungus. We suggest that up to 10 times more sites may exist which would produce a population of 150 at 40 locations.
Population Trend: Uncertain
Insiticia flavovirens is a saprophytic fungus closely related to Mycena. This species appears to only grown on fallen tree fern trunks. Stevenson described it from the trunk of Cyathea dealbata and although the majority of subsequent records confirm this association there is one record on C. medullaris and one on Dicksonia. So the host range is still in question.
The majority of the locations for this species are pockets of native forest that are not necessarily protected within the National Parks and Reserves systems of New Zealand. These areas are subject to land use change and will be under pressure from urban development and recreation, particularly the five sites close to Auckland and Wellington. Climate change may also have impact on the host species. Predictions of global warming and associated climate change indicate widespread increases in light intensities, temperatures, and the frequency and severity of droughts, all these are known to impact on Cyathea sps.
Confirmation of the fungus host range would assist in understanding how best to conserve it.
Manaaki Whenau - Landcare Research databases: https://nzfungi2.landcareresearch.co.nz/
Segedin, B.P. (1987). An annotated checklist of Agarics and Boleti recorded from New Zealand. New Zealand Journal of Botany 25 (2): 197
Stevenson, G. 1964: The Agaricales of New Zealand: V. Kew Bulletin 19(1): 1-59.