The Beagle Project

Darwin did not have much to write about on the 10th, merely stating:

“Removed to a bay North of Orange Bay.” (Feb 10)

So I’ll use the opportunity to continue the story of the southern forests. Today – the story of a little yellow golf-ball shaped fungus that Darwin found growing on the trees. As it bears his name, it only seems fair that he should have the first chance to describe it:

“In the Beech forests, the trees are much diseased: on the rough excrescences vast numbers of yellow balls grow.— These are of the colour of yolk of an egg.— & vary in size from a bullet to a small apple.— in shape globular, but a little produced towards the footstalk or point of attachment. They grow both on the branches & stems in groups…

Sketch of Darwin’s fungus from Voyage of the Beagle:

Cyttaria darwinii


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