A N I M A L
by Gilda Davidian
Our friend Miwa had posted the photo above on her facebook a while back and I couldn’t get it out of my head! These beautiful fungi are called nidulariacea and are also known as fairy cups or bird nest’s fungi, cause they look like bird nests with little eggs in them. They grow on mulch or bark and can be found in moist foresty or tropical areas (Miwa found this one in Stanley Park in Vancouver BC).
The nests are splash cups. When a raindrop hits one at the right angle, the walls are shaped such that the eggs are expelled a good distance from the nest. Some species have a sticky trailing thread, a funicular cord, attached to the peridiole. If that thread encounters a twig on its flight the egg will swing around and wrap itself around the twig. The spores can then germinate there and start the life cycle over again. (SOURCE)