There’s no real mystery why this thing is called a “bleeding tooth fungus.” It is … alarming. Although I guess that if you kind of step back and squint, you can convince yourself that it looks like strawberry yogurt? That somebody bled on.


Be warned, though: It is NOT a strawberry yogurt that somebody bled on, so as delicious as that sounds, please don’t eat it. The fungus, Hydnellum peckii, won’t poison you, but it tastes so bitter that it’s considered inedible. Weirdly, though, it might have other uses for humans — that “blood” (which some people compare, more appetizingly, to jam) contains an effective anticoagulant, similar to the drug heparin. Proof that even the freakiest of fungi have their value, as long as someone is willing to, like, look at them and touch them and stuff.

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