ca. 150 × ?? mm, white, about one-third inserted in
substrate, white; context ?;
exannulatae; universal veil saccate,
white on exterior.
lamella edge tissue
WISCONSIN—Sauk Co. - Mirror Lake St.
Pk. [43.5642° N/ 89.8179° W, 291 m], 7.ix.2014
Andrew Khitsun s.n. [mushroomobserver
(RET 667-9, nrITS & rnLSU seq'd.).
Despite the light gray coloring of the cap.
This species has an nrITS sequence nearly identical
to that of A.
Amanita abliceps and
I started to write something about the genetic
similarity of the white-capped Amanita albiceps
and the gray-capped Amanita sp-WI03 in the
of the night last night. Then I thought that I
didn't have all the information laid out
The next morning I decided just to show you what I
In the case of the two cited species, their nrITS
sequences are essentially identical. So are
nrLSU sequences. I have attached a
picture showing a full alignment of four sequences
from different samples of A. albiceps and
seven sequences from different samples of A.
The alignment has the SSU and LSU segments entirely
trimmed away leaving 498 columns in the
alignment. As you will see, not all of the
sequences are the same length. They vary from
492-498 nucleotides long. This is because
there is a variable length "AT" repeat. A
repeat of this sort can happen in nature, and it can
happen during the PCR process. It is not
considered a meaningful difference between the
sequences. The repeat occurs between and including
columns 161-175 of the alignment.
On the left of the alignment are the names of the
Little marks on the otherwise gray bars of the
alignment indicate the follow four differences in
the alignment: br>
Coll. 11 has one C in a column of T's. The
difference happens to be from a sample of sp-WI03.
Coll. 252 has one Y (C or T ambiguity) in a column
of T's. The difference happens to be from a
sample of sp-WI03.
Coll. 387 has one R (A or G ambiguity) in a column
of G's. The difference happens to be from a
sample of A. albiceps.
Coll. 422 has one T in a column of C's. The
difference happens to be from a sample of
If I were to draw a distinction it would have to
be based on one variation in each of 4 columns.
The evidence involving ambiguites could (arguably)
be discarded. The sample size is not
gigantic. I would not judge there is
significant support to separate species on the
information I have provided here.
In a separate post I will provide what information
there is concerning nrLSU data.
I should note that this is not an unusual
occurrence for nrITS. There are a number of cases
in which species that appear morpologically distinct
are barely or not at all distinct according to the
barcode. One resolution is to say that some species
have albino basidiomes. Another is to say,
"Wait and see what some other genes will
Here is a sidelight to the story. The three
collections from Michigan (lines 1, 2, and 10 in the
figure) were all made by Huafang Su. They have
a mixture of white and gray caps. One cap of
each color was collected by Huafang Su on the same
day at the same site. These collections are
documented on mushroomobserver: