Fungi have no chlorophyll and obtain their nutrients from living plants and animals, or dead trees, plants and animals. The parts of fungi that we see are called fruiting bodies which grow in a variety of shapes, sizes and colours, ranging from vibrant to neutral tones. They are composed of densely compacted filaments and all produce spores that are spread by the wind or insects.
New Zealand has thousands of fungi species. Many are undescribed with only approximately 6,500 having been reported. Some are exotics that have been brought to New Zealand by humans.
Not all fungi grow in our native forests, some grow on sand near the beach, in pine forests and in our gardens.