AUTUMN conditions have created ideal growing conditions for poisonous mushrooms across the state, Victoria’s chief health officer Professor Charles Guest warned.
In a warning issued by the Department of Health and Human Services, Prof Guest said people should avoid gathering wild mushrooms because of the risk of collecting poisonous varieties which may appear very similar to edible varieties.
The warning coincides with the arrival of the mushrooming season, spawned when rain encourages growth of the fungi in the still warm earth.
“While commercially-sold mushrooms are safe, poisonings can occur when people gathering wild mushrooms inadvertently include toxic species,” Prof Guest said.
“Anyone who becomes ill after eating mushrooms should seek urgent medical advice and, if possible, take samples of the whole mushroom for identification.”