Sunday, November 29, 2009

Tools of the Trade

The picture shows the tools I most frequently use when mushroom foraging. The knife and basket are essential. A knife cuts the mushroom free from the ground and prevents dirt from being collected and messing up your harvest. The basket is a nice device for carrying your harvest, and keeps your collection fresh. Additionally, spores may drop onto the ground through the basket weaving creating opportunities for future collecting. My basket was locally made using strips of White Oak.

The camera is a small Olympus digital with a decent f1.8 lens, able to catch a lot of light in the dark forest. You may notice the tissue paper taped over the flash. This helps to diffuse the light when taking close-ups while using the flash. The tripod is a small Manfrotto model 709B. Tripods are essential in low light conditions, plus they're indispensable when taking multiple exposures for use in high dynamic range photography.

The field guidebooks are regional guides to mushrooms commonly found in the area where I forage, or as a source of recipes and food preparation. The Internet can be useful for assisting in identification, and as a source for recipes.

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