The panther cap (Amanita pantherina) is a graceful, slim mushroom with a shiny brown cap showing white spots that looks unmistakably as one species of the genus Amanita. It’s also one of the most poisonous.
It grows from one egg or total veil that remains wrinkled and powdery at the stipe bottom, but several regular, concentric patches of it stick on the cap surface. The stipe is tall and thin, from 1 to 2 cm diameter, white color. It wears a membranous ring that comes from the partial veil that once covered the grills. These grills are also white, dense and elegant.
The panther cap grows in leaved tree woods in low altitude, mainly below oaks and evergreen oaks. The panther cap can be mistaken by two edible species of Amanita, the true blusher (A.rubescens) and the grey spotted Amanita (A.spissa), both bigger and with not as white and thin spots on the cap. The mistake can be a disaster.
[photos Jordi Badia]