Defined as final stage for imminent, impending danger of the highest order, red alert is a warning that your peril is assured if you proceed carelessly.
The bright red wild mushrooms depicted should be considered a red alert, in fact, all wild red mushrooms that you may encounter should be a warning that extreme danger to your health is possible if you harvest them for your table.
Although this particular type of wild mushroom is not from the famous highly toxic Amanita family it is poisonous and should be avoided.
This member of the Russula family if eaten raw or inadequately cooked will make you sick with nausea, vomiting, and severe stomach cramps ultimately followed by diarrhoea. These mushrooms normally don’t kill however, health compromised people and children can die from the toxins if not treated immediately.
Russula is the generic name for his species which means red or reddish and many members of this large family have red caps yet the majority are different colors.
According to my research only 5% of the 750 types of Russula or “brittlegills” can be identified readily with any degree of confidence moreover, specimens found can be a variety of colors including red, orange, yellow, white, green, blue, purple, or a combination of several colours.
Our specimen seems to be a Russula rosea because its cap is convex, carmine red while the gills are pale straw-yellow, brittle, with a red edge at rim of the cap meanwhile, the stem appears flushed carmine.
This fungi was found in a mostly coniferous forest in the Eastern Townships of Quebec, Canada, which I had the good fortune to visit during our last Labor Day weekend.