Swimming in the Forgotten Mushroom Goo

Here is my first Foldscope video I filmed on April 12th, 2017!

I am getting used to focusing, holding the Foldscope/phone, and optimizing lighting, all at the same time! (Using “Frontiers”  Foldscope, indoor natural light, iPhone 4S)

I certainly wasn’t expecting those organisms swimming in this goo. (4/19/2017 update: They are nematodes. Thank you, Laks and Manu for identification help!)


Back in February, 2017, the brown goo looked like this:

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My mycology friends helped me identify them as Amanita gemmata. I picked one near San Leandro Creek in Oakland, CA. After observing their gills using fluorescence/DIC, I stored it in my fridge and completely forgot about it! So happy to revisit the specimen to make more discoveries!



4 Comments Add yours

  1. laksiyer says:

    Fantastic. These are nematodes.

    1. Honomi says:

      Thank you! I updated my post thanks to your help with identification.

  2. Manu Prakash says:

    Dear @Honomi,

    This is so wonderful to see.. As Laks said; these are nematodes. But did you say the sample was in the fridge. How did they last/survive in the cold?

    Nematodes have been found in the most extreme places in the world.. including deep in the earth’s crust.

    Also; when you mount your foldscope coupler magnet – try to align it well; so you get full field of view. You can digitally zoom a little as well. When I am next running a field foldscope training session, I will include you.

    Keep exploring; but love to see some more posts.. Specially in this goopy water 🙂


    1. Honomi says:

      Dear Manu,
      Thank you! Yes, my sample was in the fridge (for standard kitchen use; kept at 1~3 degree celsius) for at least 2 months! So I really wasn’t expecting anything to be happily moving around like these nematodes. I am guessing they are fungal-feeders.

      I especially enjoyed observing how they move by thrashing back and forth.

      I’m so glad you brought up the coupler magnet mounting/aligning! That is one of the main things I’m having the most trouble with during imaging, but I’m getting the hang of it. I’ll use digital zoom next time. I would definitely love to get more training. Thank you!


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