Alien-like creature with 'sickly smell of rotting corpses' found in woods
The joys of Australia
An alien-like "creature" which smells of rotting corpses has been found in woodland in Queensland, Australia.
A hiker spotted the bizarre-looking thing whilst he was out on Mount Nebo in Moreton Bay, and took a picture of it which he then shared on Reddit. Describing the smell of it, the walker said that it was "hard to describe the sickly sweet smell of rotting corpses to those who don't have first hand experience already".
He said that he was able to smell it from "about 1m out" and that there were flies on it that can be seen in the picture. One user described it as looking like "something out of Resident Evil," with another saying that it "looks like it belongs in the upside-down".
Many though were able to identify the growth as a type of mushroom called a Stinkhorn, which seems like an appropriate name for the fungus based on the description of the odour.
It is a type of mushroom famed for its strong, pungent smell that is intended to attract flies for pollination purposes.
One person replied: "That my friend is a Stinkhorn, a kind of mushroom. The smell is to attract flies for pollination."
Another said: "I have a couple of these fuckers in my yard, my question is can you burn them with fire or how else can you eradicate them? Standard weed killer? They smell like corpse."
A third also said that they had appeared in their garden, but added that they "blowtorched those fuckers so they can't spread their offensive spores," in a true showing of no-nonsense Australian pragmatism.
Someone also said that if you wanted to you could actually eat the fungus when "they're young and still in the 'egg' phase."
Not sure I'd stick this one on a full English though.
The Redditors were indeed right though. As reported in the Mail, Brett Summerell, Chief Botanist and Director of Research at the Sydney Royal Botanic Gardens, confirmed that the growth was part of the Stinkhorn family. It is thought to be a Aseroe Rubra or 'starfish fungus,' and produces a sticky brown slime, the smell of which has been compared to sewage, faeces and rotten meat.
Feel like an Australian Gardeners' World would be an interesting watch with stuff like this on there.