• Proposed
  • Under Assessment
  • LCPreliminary Assessed
  • 4Assessed
  • 5Published

Russula hixsonii Murrill

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Scientific name
Russula hixsonii
Common names
IUCN Specialist Group
Mushroom, Bracket and Puffball
Assessment status
Preliminary Assessed
Preliminary Category
Proposed by
David Lewis
David Lewis
Anders Dahlberg

Assessment Notes

Least concern because of recent large collections from Georgia.

Taxonomic notes

Described by William A. Murrill in 1943 from Alachua Co., Florida.  Russula hixsonii has a large sized fruiting body with a roseous to incarnate colored cap, thick context and upon drying, an odor of freshly baked bread.

Why suggested for a Global Red List Assessment?

A rare species, known only from Newman’s Lake near Gainesville Florida and Crooked River State Park near St. Mary’s, Georgia. Arleen Bessette has also found it on Jekyll Island, GA and in the Harris Neck Wildlife Management Area south of Savannah in McIntosh County, GA. It is locally abundant when Arleen finds it. She suspects it will be found in SC. Perhaps it is not a Gulf Coast species, but an Atlantic Coast species?

Geographic range

Described by Murrill from Newman’s Lake near (Alachua Co.) Gainesville, Florida and recently (2011) found along the coastal region of Georgia by Bessette (2011).

Population and Trends

Buyck in 10 years of collecting in Florida and the Gulf States has never collected it and it has not been observed in Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana or Texas with collecting and observations scanning a period of 60 years by many mycologists. However, Bessette has found large collections in several sites in coastal Georgia.

Population Trend: Improving

Habitat and Ecology

Found on a moist shaded slope near sweet gum, west of Newman’s Lake, near Gainesville, Florida during the fall (Murrill) and Singer with Quercus with some pines, Serrenao and Liquidambar, fruiting from May to October; in Georgia under Live Oak (Quercus virginiana) , Longleaf Pine (Pinus palustris) and Sweetgum (Liquidambar) in October.

Temperate Forest


Severe drought, hurricane damage and severe flooding may have affected the populations.  Also the influx of invasive species such as Chinese Tallow-tree (Sapium sebiferum) and Chinese Privet   (Ligustrum sinense ) may have influenced the overall ecology of the region.  Urban sprawl in Florida may be a problem.  Another problem is the destructive of plants and soil by feral hogs.

Trend Unknown/Unrecorded

Conservation Actions

Species is found in State Parks and protected areas in Georgia.

Site/area protection

Research needed

Buyck, Bessette & Adamčik’s study with modern techniques has updated the taxonomic position of this species.  More extensive collecting along the Georgia coast and Florida would help understand its ecological role and extend its range.

Population size, distribution & trends

Use and Trade


Murrill, W. A.  1943.  More new fungi from Florida. 
Lloydia 6: 207-228.

Hesler, L. R.  1960.  A Study of Russula types. 
  Mem. Torrey Bot. Club 21:1-59.

Singer, R. 1957.  New and interesting species of Basidiomycetes V. 
Sydowia 11: 141-272.

Buyck, B., Arleen Bessette & S. Adamčík.  2011.  Russula hixsonii Murrill, a rare and intriguing southern species of uncertain systematic position, rediscovered in Georgia, USA. 
Cryptogamie Mycologie 32 (4): 403-412.

Country occurrence

Regional Population and Trends

Country Trend Redlisted