Chorioactis is a genus of fungus that contains the single species
Chorioactis geaster, an extremely rare mushroom found only in select
locales in Texas and Japan. In the former, it is commonly known as the
"devil's cigar" or the "Texas star"; in Japan it is called
It is notable for its unusual appearance. The fruit body, which grows on
the stumps or dead roots of cedar elms (in Texas) or dead oaks (in
Japan), somewhat resembles a dark brown or black cigar before it splits
open radially into a starlike arrangement of four to seven leathery
rays. The interior surface of the fruit body bears the spore-bearing
tissue, and is colored white to brown, depending on its age. Fruit body
opening can be accompanied by a distinct hissing sound and the release
of a smoky cloud of spores. Fruit bodies were first collected in Austin,
Texas, and the species was named Urnula geaster in 1893; it was later
found in Kyushu in 1937, but the mushroom was not reported again in
Japan until 1973. Although the new genus Chorioactis was proposed to
accommodate the unique species a few years after its original discovery,
it was not until 1968 that it was accepted as a valid genus.
Read more: <https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chorioactis>
Today's selected anniversaries:
Ming Chinese naval forces defeated a Dutch East India Company
fleet in the Taiwan Strait, the largest naval encounter between Chinese
and European forces before the First Opium War two hundred years later.
In one of the worst maritime disasters in the history of the
British Isles, more than 1,400 sailors on four Royal Navy ships were
lost in stormy weather off the Isles of Scilly.
Thomas Edison performed a successful test using a carbon
filament thread in an incandescent light bulb (pictured), which would
become the most successful version of the product.
Cold War: U.S. President John F. Kennedy announced that Soviet
nuclear weapons had been discovered in Cuba and that he had ordered a
naval "quarantine" of the island nation.
Vichy France official Maurice Papon was jailed for crimes
against humanity committed during World War II.
Wiktionary's word of the day:
1. (transitive) To draw or push under or below.
2. (intransitive) To move downwards underneath something.
3. (rare) To remove; to deduct; to take away; to disregard.
Wikiquote quote of the day:
Diwali is celebrated on the darkest night of the year when the
necessity and the beauty of lights can be truly appreciated. Light is a
symbol in the world's religions for God, truth and wisdom. Given the
antiquity of India, the diversity of its religious traditions and the
interaction among these, it should not surprise us to know that many
religious communities celebrate Diwali. Each one offers a distinctive
reason for the celebration that enriches its meaning. For every
community, however, Diwali celebrates and affirms hope, and the triumph
of goodness and justice over evil and injustice. These values define the
meaning of Diwali.
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