• Proposed
  • 2Under Assessment
  • 3Preliminary Assessed
  • 4Assessed
  • 5Published

Henningsia brasiliensis (Speg.) Speg.

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Scientific name
Henningsia brasiliensis
(Speg.) Speg.
Common names
IUCN Specialist Group
Mushroom, Bracket and Puffball
Assessment status
Proposed by
Felipe Bittencourt
Comments etc.
Felipe Bittencourt

Assessment Notes

Taxonomic notes

This species was originally described as Polyporus brasiliensis based on specimens collected in São Paulo, Southeastern Brazil. Later, it was redesignated as Henningsia geminella, based on collections of Southern Brazil. With the genus Henningsia being accepted, the current name of this species is H. brasiliensis.

Why suggested for a Global Red List Assessment?

Henningsia brasiliensis is a polypore that produces a beautiful light brown fan to rosette-shaped basidiomata. A closer look at the pileus surface will reveal little squamules, characteristic of the species. This species has a large extent of occurrence on Neotropics and rather conspicuous basidiomata in the field, but is known for a few collections.

Henningisia brasiliensis is a conspicuous polypore that can be found growing on dead trunks of tropical and subtropical forests of Neotropics. As this species doesn’t appear to have any substrate and/or habitat preference, it is expected to be found through the Neotropics. However, the fact that this species is known for a few records draws attention and more data is desirable. H. brasiliensis is assessed as Least Concern.

Geographic range

Henningsia brasiliensis occurs in countries of South and Central America. It can be found growing on dead hardwoods, inside tropical and subtropical forests, and must be widespread in Neotropics. There is one record of the species from Western Sumatra, Indonesia (Suhirman & Núñez 1998), but it is likely other species.

Population and Trends

This species is known for about 17 sites through Neotropics. It is expected to be found in up to 10,000 sites throughout the Atlantic and Amazon Forests and other Neotropical forests, with up to 50-100 mature individuals per site. Total population is estimated at 500,000 to 1,000,000 mature individuals. In Tropical South America, Biome changes are expected in the next years, where there is a reduction of tropical forests being replaced by savannas (Salazar et al. 2007, Sales et al. 2020), which could largely affect the population of H. brasiliensis in the future.

Population Trend: Decreasing

Habitat and Ecology

Henningsia brasiliensis is saprotrophic, growing on dead trunks of angiosperms. Most records are from wet tropical and subtropical forests of Guyana, Brazil, Ecuador, French Guiana, Peru and Venezuela. There are a few records from seasonal forests of Costa Rica, the northernmost know occurrence of the species. As most of the records are from wet tropical forest, it is expected that this species doesn’t occur on dry forests of South America, such as Caatinga and Chaco.

Subtropical/Tropical Moist Lowland Forest


In Brazil, H. brasiliensis is found in the Atlantic and Amazon Forests. Atlantic Forest is known to be undergoing exceptional loss of habitat due to human occupation, land use changes, deforestation and fire (Myers 2000). The Amazon Forest is also undergoing rapid deforestation and facing increased fire frequency and intensity, following years of decline (INPE, 2020), while the Atlantic Forest suffering constantly for urbanization, industrialization, and agriculture expansion that leads to deforestation, fragmentation and a decline of habitat quality. Also, a process called ‘savannization’ of tropical forests of South America is expected in the next changes due to climate change and land use changes (Salazar et al. 2007, Sales et al. 2020), replacing the forests by savannas in the next decades.

Housing & urban areasAgro-industry farmingIncrease in fire frequency/intensityHabitat shifting & alteration

Conservation Actions

The continuity and enhancement of protected areas where it occurs is needed, but also more surveys better understand the distribution of this species and potential unprotected areas of occurrence.

Resource & habitat protection

Research needed

Additional surveys in other sites of Atlantic Forest and Amazon are needed to better understand its distribution and boundaries. Although H. brasiliensis have a great extent of occurrence, the fact that it is a conspicuous species in the field and is known for a few dozens of records draws attention. However, there is no sufficient knowledge to affirm that this distribution is due to fragmentation of the population (i.e. habitat loss) or lack of research and/or collections. Revision of herbarium specimens may reveal additional records of this species and help clarify its distribution. Also, molecular data of this species are desirable.

TaxonomyPopulation size, distribution & trendsLife history & ecologyThreats

Use and Trade

No use is known for this species.



Möller, A. (1895). Protobasidiomyceten. Botanische Mittheilungen aus den Tropen. 8:1-180.

Myers N, Mittermeier RA, Mittermeier CG, Fonseca GA, Kent J (2000) Biodiversity hotspots for conservation priorities. Nature 403(6772): 853-858.

Salazar, L. F., Nobre, C. A., & Oyama, M. D. (2007). Climate change consequences on the biome distribution in tropical South America. Geophysical Research Letters, 34(9).

Sales, L. P., Galetti, M., & Pires, M. M. (2020). Climate and land‐use change will lead to a faunal “savannization” on tropical rainforests. Global Change Biology, 26(12), 7036-7044.

Scarano, F. R., & Ceotto, P. (2015). Brazilian Atlantic forest: impact, vulnerability, and adaptation to climate change. Biodiversity and Conservation, 24(9), 2319-2331.

Spegazzini, C. (1889). Fungi Puiggariani. Pugillus 1. Boletín de la Academia Nacional de Ciencias en Córdoba. 11(4):381-622.

Country occurrence

Regional Population and Trends

Country Trend Redlisted