Australian Flora

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STAR FISH FUNGUS
An unusual tropical member of the ornate stinkhorn family (Clathraceae) is the starfish fungus (Aseroe rubra). Like other stinkhorns, this peculiar fungus emerges from a subterranean "egg" stage. At maturity it has five to ten radiating arms, each divided into two slender "tentacles." A slimy, black spore mass occurs in the center and at the bases of the radiating "tentacles." The spore slime has a fetid odor resembling that of rotting meat.