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Suillus pungens Thiers & A.H. Sm.

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Scientific name
Suillus pungens
Thiers & A.H. Sm.
Common names
IUCN Specialist Group
Mushroom, Bracket and Puffball
Assessment status
Assessment date
IUCN Red List Category
Siegel, N.
Dahlberg, A.

Assessment Notes

The content on this page is fetched from The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species: https://www.iucnredlist.org/species/198479192/198487960


Suillus pungens is a common Suillus native to California, USA, and introduced elsewhere in the world. Its native habitat (Pinus radiata and P. muricata forests) is under threat, but Suillus pungens is highly adaptable and and occurs with a wide range introduced and cultivated pine species in its native range, and with planted and naturalized Pinus radiata and P. muriata stands in California. Because of the adaptability of this species, and its abundance across California, it is listed as Least Concern (LC).

Taxonomic notes

It was described from California, USA (Smith and Thiers 1964). Suillus subacerbus McNabb is a synonym (NZ Fungi Database 2021)

Geographic range

This species native to coastal California, USA, with Pinus muricata and P. radiata. It is widely introduced in California; with both planted and naturalized native pines, and introduced P. pinea, P. pinaster, and P. halapensis (Nguyen et al. 2017). However, in theory, this species is so adaptable that it may have been able to spread to these areas naturally anyway, and at least some of these areas could have been within the historical distribution of its natural hosts. It is common with introduced P. radiata in New Zealand, and has been reported from Australia with introduced pines.

Population and Trends

The population is stable and widespread with introduced and naturalized habitats. However, its native hosts are under threat: Pinus radiata is listed in the IUCN Red List is Endangered (Farjon 2013-b) and P. muricata as Vulnerable (Farjon 2013-a).

Population Trend: unknown

Habitat and Ecology

It is ectomycorrhizal with Pinus muricata and P. radiata in its native habitat, but is also widely introduced; with both planted native pines, and introduced P. pinea, P. pinaster, and P. halapensis (Nguyen et al. 2017), especially in urban areas. It is common with introduced P. radiata in New Zealand.


This species occurs with two threatened pine species that are under threat mostly due to habitat loss resulting from urban development and fire regime change. Suillus pungens has adapted well to exotic pines both within its native range and as an introduction elsewhere, and is quite common with planted and naturalized P. radiata and P. muricata, and with introduced P. pinea, P. pinaster, and P. halapensis in urban areas across much of coastal California.

Conservation Actions

There is a need to protect and manage coastal Pinus muricata and P. radiata forests in California. No specific research is currently needed in regards to this species.

Use and Trade

This species is edible, but rarely collected.

Source and Citation

Siegel, N. 2021. Suillus pungens. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2021: e.T198479192A198487960. https://dx.doi.org/10.2305/IUCN.UK.2021-2.RLTS.T198479192A198487960.en .Accessed on 26 September 2023

Country occurrence