Daldinia concentrica, King Alfred’s Cakes or Cramp Balls: identification pictures ( images), habitat, edible or poisonous; taxonomy, etymology, synonyms, similar. Daldinia concentrica with centipedes Maybe you were a very bad boy or girl during the year, and all Santa Claus brought you for Christmas was a lump of coal in. King Alfred’s Cakes, Daldinia concentrica, also known as Cramp Balls. This distinctive fungus grows on Ash trees.

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When King Alfred was on the run from the Vikings he is said to have taken refuge in the home of a peasant woman.

Ash trees often shed their branches and by growing on these fallen valdinia, Daldinia concentrica helps them to rot away. You might break your teeth if you tried. Never pick and eat any species of fungus that you cannot positively recognise or are unsure about. The black dots are spore deposits that form very close to perithecial openings.

King Alfred’s Cakes, Daldinia concentrica

Which species are on the road to recovery? This refers to one of the best known stories in English history. Black ascospores are ejected from these openings in great numbers, covering the surface of the fruit body and nearby surfaces. If you are able to help please contact: King Alfred’s cakes conservation Conservation action has not been targeted at this species.

Daldinia concentrica

The First Cocnentrica website has some good photos of the fungus, its asci and its spores. The inedible fungus Daldinia concentrica is known by several common names, including King Alfred’s cakecramp ballsand coal fungus. The fungus is ball-shaped, with a hard, friable, shiny black fruiting body 2 to 7 centimeters wide.


Common duckweed Lemna gibba. This cpncentrica is featured in: The fungus is a useful form of tinder for fire-lighting. A paper examines the chemical composition of Daldinia concentrica but you need to subscribe to the Journal of Natural Products if you want to read more than the abstract.

More info on Wikipedia.

X Close Link to this photo Embed this Arkive thumbnail link “portlet” by copying and pasting the code below. Photosynthesis Metabolic process characteristic of plants in which carbon dioxide is broken down, using energy from sunlight absorbed by the green pigment chlorophyll. Organic compounds are made daldiia oxygen is given off as a by-product. Carbon balls; Crampballs; King Alfred’s cakes. Some common names for this fungus are the coal fungus, carbon balls, cramp balls, or King Alfred’s cakes.

You can view distribution information for this species at the National Biodiversity Network Atlas. With maturity, the fruit body becomes grayish-brown to blackish. AfricachimpanzeeconservationfilmIn the Fieldlab chimpsLiberiaPrimatesprimatologyrehabilitationtrue storywildlifewildlife filmWildscreen Festival.

Although small, the moth is very pretty, and worth looking out for. These include daldinone A and a purple polycyclic pigment and a metabolite called concentricolwhich is oxidized squalene. It needs to be dry and black to do this.

Authentication This information is awaiting authentication by a species expert, and will be updated as soon as possible. The nearly globose to hemispherical but often irregularly shaped fruit bodies are grayish-white to pinkish- brown at first.

Wikimedia Commons has media related to Daldinia concentrica.

Terms of Use – The displayed portlet may be used as a link from your website to Arkive’s online content for private, scientific, conservation or educational purposes only. Fruit bodies cm wide. Spores Microscopic particles involved in both dispersal and reproduction. He fell asleep and the cakes burned. The rings of Daldinia concentrica also represent a season’s worth of reproduction.


King Alfred’s cakes habitat King Alfred’s cakes are found growing on the dead branches of deciduous trees, particularly ash, but can also occur on beech and alder 4. Caterpillars of the concealer moth Harpella forficella have been found to eat this fungus.

It is also believed by some authorities that the alder wood wasp is involved in the dispersal of spores.

Daldinia concentrica — Wikipédia

Help us share the wonders of the natural world. Daldinia concentrica is concebtrica Ascomycete fungus, in the family Xylariaceae. Fungi are neither plants nor animals but belong to their own kingdom. King Alfred’s cakes, also known as ‘cramp balls’ is a hard, inedible ball-shaped fungus 4.

The sectioned specimens at the right show the distinct banding pattern of the sterile base. A zone of black spores formed around the central specimen.

Lesser horseshoe bat Rhinolophus hipposideros. Peloponnese slow worm Anguis cephalonnica. Concentrica refers to the concentrically zoned interior. Fragments can be broken off to expose more embers and transferred to a tinder concentriica to create an open flame.