A lethal species of fungus, among the deadliest in the world, has been found in northern Australia thanks to a local photographer, many kilometers away from Japan and Korea, where it was known to be housed. According to James Cook University, the presence of the poison fire coral fungus was then confirmed by scientists.
Numerous individuals met their demise in South Korea and Japan when they mistook the poison fire coral fungus, brick red, for edible mushrooms utilized for conventional medicine.
Matt Barrett, a mycologist based at James Cook University confirmed the presence of the toxic fungus in Australia. He stated that the discovery greatly broadens the fungus’ known distribution. According to Barrett, it is probable that the fungus grows in Cairns in Northern Australia.
The fungus has also been seen in Papua New Guinea and Indonesia.
The fungus is the only known species of fungus where the toxins can be absorbed just by touching it.
If eaten, the induvial will have to undergo upsetting symptoms, including diarrhea, fever, stomach cramps, and numbness. These initial symptoms are followed by the peeling skin of the limbs and shrinking of the brain, stated Barrett.
Consuming it may lead to multiple organ failures or even death, if untreated.
Barrett stated how the fact that they could discover a distinctive and medically significant fungus such as the poison fire coral right in their backyard showed how they had to educate themselves more regarding fungi in northern Australia.
He stated how he wasn’t surprised as he had been finding a couple of things over the years.
He stated how no one goes around the rainforest taking pictures of fungi. He added that he hopes to come across more things in the future.