Selected biotope types



Habitat examples

In the following we would like to introduce you to some representative habitats of mushrooms in the Bohemian Forest. On the Bavarian side, the majority of the project area belongs to the Upper Palatinate-Bavarian Forest natural area. Classification and completeness according to FFH habitat types (NATURA 2000) would go beyond our scope.


1. Open landscape habitats

1.1 Moorlands

1.2 Species rich grassland, mountain pastures, extensive meadows

2. Forests

2.1 Beech forests

2.2 Mixed mountain forests with beech, spruce and fir

2.3 Spruce forests / timberland

2.4 Montane to apline acidic spruce forests

2.5 Oak hornbeam forests and canyon forests in the Danube Valleys

2.6 Alluvial forests (hard and softwood forests, spruce wetland)

2.7 Mountain pine fields (bush vegetaion with Pinus mugo)

3. Special sides

3.1 Coprophilic fungi on cow dung, dung heap and horse dung

3.2 Burning areas

4. Rivers of the planar and montane stage

4.1 Streams and drainage ditches

Hochlagen im Bayerischen Wald
High level in the Bavarian Forest    Credit: Lukas Haselberger


For a long time, the Bavarian-Bohemian border were characterized by large, closed forest landscapes that only allowed for open country societies in high altitudes and at special locations. As a results of human settlements being established, larger forest areas were cleared, as evidenced by countless place names ending in -reut, -reuth, -reutte. The original habitats of fauna, flora and funga have been greatly changed by the extensive use of state forests and some large forest owners. Many forest species have strongly decreased in abundance or are already extinct. However originally species rich arable land developed, with field margins, pastures and hay meadows, which were established with the beginning of stable use and as a reserve for winter. Until the mid-1980s, the originally native flora was widespread in large parts of the Bohemian Forest. The increasing agricultural intensification with the spreading of liquid manure, lime, artificial and mineral fertilizers, as well as the introduction of silage use with 6-8 mowing events a season has reduced the share of species-rich grasslands within the landscape. The less competitive types of plants, fungi and animals are gradually disappearing here. The remaining fragments have become habitats worth protecting.


1. Open landscape habitats

1.1 Moorlands

High-moorland landscape in the Bavarian Forest           Credit: Lukas Haselberger



The project area contains a high proportion of bog landscapes compared to other areas. These include peat bogs, raised bogs, moor forests and muck forests. Bogs were formed where, after the last ice age more than 12,000 years ago, water was accumulated due to water-impermeable layers of soil, which then silted up. Bogs are naturally very low in nutrients with plants, mushrooms and animals adapted accordingly. The presence of various peat mosses (Sphagnum sp.) is characteristic of all types of peat.

Canopy in the Bohemian Forest
Downy birch and spruce in the Bohemian Forest
Credit: Peter Karasch
Common Sundew and
sphagnum moss in a fen
Common Sundew and sphagnum moss in a fen
Credit: Peter Karasch

There are also absolute peat specialists among mushrooms. Some can be found directly in the peat moss and therefore have species names such as "sphagnophila" or "sphagnorum". Ectomycorrhizal mushroom species also occur in bogs, if appropriate tree partners such as birch, spruce and pine are present.

Galerina sphagnorum
Galerina sphagnorum
Credit: Peter Karasch
Leccinum variicolor
Leccinum variicolor
Credit: Peter Karasch



1.2 Species rich grassland, mountain pastures, extensive meadows

After the end of the last great ice age around 12,000 years ago, large tundra-like meadows emerged at the edge of the forests, which were populated by grass-eating animal species (herbivores). Forest-forming tree species gradually conquered large areas that only became grassland again through human use (clearing, cf. -reut, -reuth). These areas, either grazed or mowed once or twice a year for centuries until 60- 80 years ago, were largely very low in nutrients (< 12 KG N / ha), as artificial fertilizer or large quantities of liquid manure were not available. This old-fashioned form of agriculture has resulted in very species-rich grasslands, which provide habitat for up to 150 different herbs and grasses per hectare. Since an average of 5-6 species of mushrooms can be expected for each plant species, several hundred species of mushrooms can be expected on species-rich grassland. The higher the nitrogen and nutrient content of the soil, the lower the biodiversity up to extremely species-poor, high-performance grassland.

The most common habitat types in the Bohemian Forest are species-rich montane mat grasslands and mountain hay meadows (NATURA 2000).


Primrose meadow
Where primroses still grow in spring
you can find meadow mushrooms in autumn.
Credit: Gerhard Schuster
Moss-rich rock corridors
Moss-rich rock corridors are species-rich fungal habitats
Credit: Felix Hampe


Due to the shorter vegetation periods and above-average number of smallholder structures, relatively high proportions of species-rich grassland can still be found in the highlands of the Bohemian Forest. Accordingly these areas contain rare plant, animal and mushroom species. Many of these species are included on the ‘Red lists’. In 2013 the nature reserve "Himmelreich" was designated in Deggendorf because of its many rare types of mushrooms. As part of an expert report (KRIEGLSTEINER 2008), a total of 630 mushroom species were identified in the open land and forested areas. These were distributed into the boletes (14 species), agarics including russuloide (305 species), gasteromycetes (16 species), aphyllophorales (124 species), rust fungi (10 species), smut fungi (125 species), ascomycetes (125 Species), zygomycetes (1 species) and slime molds (32 species).


The sticky black tongue in the NSG Himmelreich
The sticky black tongue in the NSG Himmelreich
Credit: Peter Karasch
Dull waxcap
Dull waxcap from Guglöd
Credit: Peter Karasch
Worm-shaped club
Worm-shaped club in Guglöd
Credit: Peter Karasch
Camarophyllus virgineus
Camarophyllus virgineus in Guglöd
Credit: Peter Karasch
Entoloma porphyrophaeum
Entoloma porphyrophaeum on a hay meadow
at Zwieslerwaldhaus.
Credit: Peter Karasch
Waxcaps like the parrot waxcap show valuable species-rich grassland
Waxcaps like the parrot waxcap show valuable
species-rich grassland.
Credit: Peter Karasch


Faerie rings with mushrooms indicate species-rich grassland.               Credit: Peter Karasch


Even moderately fertilized meadows and thus those that used to occur in large numbers
Meadow mushrooms are becoming increasingly rare.   Credit: Peter Karasch


Korb mit Wiesenchampignons
The Meadow mushroom was Fungi of the year 2018 in Germany.
Credit: Peter Karasch


2. Forests

2.1 Beech forests

Central Europe is the main area of the European beech (Fagus sylvatica). Depending on the geology, exposure and small-scale climate, different types have developed. In the Bohemian Forest there are predominantly mixed forests of beech, spruce and fir due to the predominatly acidic soils of grove and woodruff beech forests. In the high altitudes forms of the subalpine beech forest with sycamore maple are found (NATURA 2000). The beech tree has several hundred species of fungi that can enter into a symbiosis (ectomycorrhiza). Some ot them are obligatory to beech, other species can form symbiosis with other tree species, too. Several hundred species of fungi are bound to the European beech, whether as symbionts, xylobionten or decomposers. RUNGE (1990) examined nine beech stumps (around 100 years old) for six years and found 51 species of mushrooms on them.



Beech forests can be found in the Bavarian Forest up to approx. 1100 m above sea level.
Credit: Lukas Haselberger


Russula lepida is one of several dozen species of deaf the European beech.
  Credit: Peter Karasch


The European beech is also the main host of the tinder fungus

Sporulating tinder sponges release white spore dust.
Credit: Peter Karasch


Old, weakend beeches will be infected by this parasite at some point. This creates valuable biotope trees (methusalems), which serve as a habitat for cave breeders such as woodpecker, hawk owl and pine marten. The tinder sponge was used by mankind in prehistoric times as a "lighter" and raw material for tindercloths, from which hats and other items of clothing are still made today.


Weste aus Zunderleder
Tinder leather vest, made in Transylvania             Credit: Karoly Mate


Geotropism in the tinder sponge. After the trunk and perennial fruiting bodies
has fallen over, the fruit layer realigns itself to the center of the earth. Credit: Peter Karasch


The beech spiked beard, an attractive natural pointer on rotten beech wood.
Credit: Gerhard Schuster


The autumn trumpets are classic symbionts of the European beech and belong
with the best edible mushrooms.   Credit: Peter Karasch


Mucidula mucida is one of the most attractive photo motifs
in the autumn beech forest. Credit: Peter Karasch


Herbstlicher Buchenwald
In beech forests you can go deep into the mild winter
find fresh mushrooms.  Credit: Gerhard Schuster


Oyster mushrooms can be found in natural beech forests that are rich in dead wood.
Credit: Peter Karasch


Nördlicher Stachelseitling
Climacodon septentrionalis is a species of jungle relic, it is valid in Germany
as critically endangered.  Credit: Peter Karasch


Verbreitungskarte Climacodon septentrionalis
Distribution Climacodon septentrionalis in Germany, a "red-list 1"-Species   Source:


2.2 Mixed mountain forests with beech, spruce and fir

In old forest relics, areas close to primeval forests and farmers' selection cutting forests, you can observe natural forest structures that could develop a more natural species composition without the planting of forestry trees such as spruce. Depending on the altitude and exposure, forest pines, oaks, sycamore maple are included. Pioneer tree species such as birch, mountain ash, willow and aspen are also found in such forests. These structurally rich forests are considered to be much more stable towards environmental influences outside the human control. If a tree species like the spruce with a share of 25% fails due to drought and bark beetle infestation, the resulting gaps are quickly closed naturally by other tree species. Forest intervention is neither intended nor necessary in natural forest systems. The natural material cycles are significantly influenced by fungi. The available organic material is gradually converted into plant-available nutrients by hundreds of species. In exchange for carbohydrates (sugar) the mycorrhizal fungi supply the trees with water and dissolved minerals.

Mixed mountain forest in the Bavarian Forest National Park near Finsterau
Credit: Lukas Haselberger
The dog-ear needs natural forests.
Credit: Dr. Matthias Theiss
Caloboletus calopus can still be found frequently in acidic mixed forests with beeches.
Credit: Gerhard Schuster


The awl-shaped horn requires dead wood from hardwoods such as birch and beech.
Credit: Felix Hampe


Laubmischwald  mit Totholz
Deadwood is necessary for the diversity of species in forests.
Credit: Gerhard Schuster


Hericium are natural indicators and only come from old thick wood
the silver fir.  Credit: Peter Karasch


Russula grata feel at home in mixed forests with a long habitat tradition.
Credit: Felix Hampe


Scutiger pes-caprae forms so-called relict mycelia in peasant forests.
Deforestation usually means the end for species that are weakly dispersed. Credit: Petra u. Werner Eimann


Blusher, also called meat mushrooms, are very adaptable and can therefore be found in almost all types of forests, gardens and parks.
Credit: Peter Karasch


The fir hen is a root parasite that can be found in forests with old silver firs.
Credit: Peter Karasch


Wilder Hausschwamm
The wild dry rot needs dead wood and habitat tradition.
Credit: Gerhard Schuster
The bark beetle succession favors Rewilding href="">Rewilding in the national park like here at Höllbach.
Credit: Peter Karasch


2.3 Spruce forests / timberland

During the time of the large forest conversion from the end of the 19th century, the wood requirement for mines, ore and glassworks and wood fireplaces was so enormous that the fast-growing spruce (Picea abies) was planted as a forest tree in large pure stands (monocultures) in large parts of Central Europe. From the 1980s to the present day it has become increasingly clear that this idea was a mistake in the generation project for forestry. The spruce was so fast-growing in pure stands because a part of its original symbiotic mushroom partner is very adaptable. These include e.g. toadstools, bitter bolete, blusher, coral, Paxillus involutus, Laccaria laccata, Lactarius and bay bolete, Russula ochroleuca and the edible bolete which can be found in almost all spruce forests. After about 30 years, most forests develop more stable mushroom communities after disturbances such as clear cutting and reforestation. Some of the mushroom species associated with spruce are popular edible mushrooms, especially the edible bolete.


Montaner Fichtenwald
Older spruce forests that are less disturbed by forestry can be very rich in fungi.
Credit: Lukas Haselberger


"Rehgoaß" grow in near-natural spruce forests with low nitrogen inputs,
Chanterelles are still as generous as they were a hundred years ago.
Credit: Peter Karasch


Trumpet chanterelles are much more common than chanterelles and grow into the Periods of frost into it.
Credit: Gerhard Schuster


The bitter bolete, also called bitterling, is just as common in the spruce forest and
spread like the edible bolete.  Credit: Gerhard Schuster               


You can find Russula ochroleuca in almost every spruce forest. Credit: Peter Karasch


The widespread Fomitopsis pinicola can be found in spruce forests with thicker dead wood.
Credit: Peter Karasch


Safranfleischiger Dickfuß
There, where one finds Cortinarius like the saffron-fleshed Cortinarius traganus, communities suitable for the location have preserved.
Credit: Peter Karasch


Blutender Korkstacheling
Many types of fungus, such as the bleeding cork sting, are sensitive
against nitrogen inputs and intensive thinning.
Credit: Peter Karasch


Pig's ear used to be widespread, common and a valued mushroom on the market.
The spruce symbiont is due to nitrogen inputs and intensive forestry has become very rare.
Credit: Peter Karasch


2.4 Montane to apline acidic spruce forests

Where the spruce occurs naturally, above the altitude that is climatically suitable for the beech, you can find typical mushroom species communities on the acidic gneiss and granite surfaces. In the Bavarian Forest these can be found in the Arber and Osser region, at Falkenstein, Rachel, Lusen and Dreisessel. The spruce occurs here almost in pure stands, accompanied by mountain ash and occasionally birch.


The beautiful Russula paludosa is in the high-altitude spruce
forests on the Lackenberg are not uncommon.
Credit: Peter Karasch


Spruce stone mushrooms accompany their mycorrhizal trees up
to the tree line in subalpine locations.
Credit: Peter Karasch

Amanita regalis can also be found in the
natural mountain spruce forests z. B. find on Lusen.
Credit: Dr. Matthias Theiss


The mountain ash petiole dodger is in Germany
a rarity. So far he has been in Bavaria and the Bohemian Forest
only in the high elevations of the Lackenberg
fallen petioles of mountain ash found.
Credit: Peter Karasch

In the area of natural bark beetle succession in the high altitudes, the
Rotrandporling the dominant wood-degrading fungus. He prepares the
Humus for the next generation of trees that is already growing.
Credit: Peter Karasch
Fomitopsis pinicola on Rachel   Credit: Peter Karasch
abgestorbene Fichten am Lusen
The new mountain forest generation is growing between the dead old trees on the Lusen.
Credit: Lukas Haselberger


2.5 Oak hornbeam forests and canyon forests in the Danube Valleys

The western project area border runs between Regensburg and Passau to Linz. On the mild vineyards along the Danube with steep rocky and dry slopes, light oak-hornbeam forests and noble hardwood forests with sycamore and linden trees have developed. Depending on the altitude, all transition stages up to the beech and mixed mountain forests are present. The forests dominated by oaks and hornbeams have their own mushroom community, even if there are overlaps in the habitats of some mushrooms.

Biotopeiche mit Fistulina hepatica
Mighty oak trees can be 300-700 years old.   Credit: Gerhard Schuster


The liver shrimp is a wood-dwelling species of fungus in warmer areas.
Credit: Gerhard Schuster


Dry and low-nitrogen oak-hornbeam forests have a rich fungal flora.
Credit: Gerhard Schuster


Grüner Knollenblätterpilz
The death cap mushroom is one of the most poisonous mushroom species in Europe.
Credit: Peter Karasch
Orangefuchsiger Raukopf
Cortinarius orellanus is also potentially deadly poisonous and can affect the
Danube Leitenwäldern can be found in the immediate vicinity of the green leaf agaric.
Credit: Peter Karasch


The variety of fungi on oak is similar to that of the European beech. Hundreds of mycorrhizal partners, xylobionts and scatterers (saprobionts) live on and with oaks.

Orangegelber Scheidenstreifling
Amanita crocea striated, a warmth-loving species.             Credit: Gerhard Schuster


Der Eichhase ist ein selten gewordener Eichenbegleiter.        Bild: Gerhard Schuster


Rosenrote Koralle
Die Rosenrote Koralle kann man bei Passau finden.      Bild: Gerhard Schuster
Rosenrote Koralle jung
Junge Fruchtkörper der Rosenroten Koralle zeigen ihre typischen Farben. Bild: Peter Karasch


Eichen- und Hainbuchenwälder liegen oft an stark besonnten Steillagen
wie den Jochensteiner Hängen bei Passau.   Bild: Gerhard Schuster
Eichenrotkappen sind selten geworden, denn sie leiden unter starken Stickstoffeinträgen
in die Wälder.     Bild: Gerhard Schuster


Der Hainbuchen-Raufuß ist noch weit verbreitet und häufig bei Hainbuchen anzutreffen.
Bild: Peter Karasch


Eichenwald auf Blockschutt.                    Bild: Gerhard Schuster


Der Hainbuchentäubling ist sehr farbvariabel und ein Symbiont der Hainbuche.
Bild: Felix Hampe


Der Satans-Röhrling ist im Böhmerwald sehr selten, da er kalkreiche Böden bevorzugt.
Bild: Gerhard Schuster


Der Mosaik-Schichtpilz ist ein Naturnähezeiger, weil er altes Starkholz der Eiche
zum Überleben braucht.   Bild: Gerhard Schuster


2.6 Auwälder (Hart- und Weichholzauen, Fichtenauwälder

So-called riparian forests have developed on the edges of lakes, streams and rivers as well as in waterlogged locations, which contain mushroom species adapted to these habitats. Gray and black alder, ash and willow are found here as symbionts and host trees. Due to the challenging soil conditions, long habitat traditions could often develop in these areas and many species that are endangered today have been preserved.

Lilastieliger Zärtling
Der Lilastielige Zärtling ist deutschlandweit eine Rarität. Man kann ihn z.B. noch an den
Uferstreifen der Wolfsteiner Ohe finden.
Bild. Peter Karasch


Erle mit Kugelschwamm
Alter Erlenstamm mit Kugelschwamm am Ilzufer.  Bild: Peter Karasch


Reichsporiger Kugelschwamm
Der Reichsporige Kugelschwamm ist in Bayern sehr selten. Der einzige bekannte Nachweis
auf der bayerischen Seite des Böhmerwaldes gelang 2017 am Ilzufer bei Passau.
Bild: Peter Karasch


Alte Weiden sind wahre Pilzbiotope. Hier wächst der Falsche Zunderschwamm, den man in
Auwäldern finden kann.
Bild: Peter Karasch
Trichterförmiger Stielporling
Der Trichterförmige Stielporling wurde erst 2016 im Nationalpark bei Altschönau in einem
Weidensumpf entdeckt. Er ist deutschlandweit sehr selten und kann als Naturnähezeiger gelten.
Bild: Dr. Matthias Theiss


Die Rundspor-Lorchel ist eine extrem seltene Urwaldreliktart. href="">Urwaldreliktart. Der einzige bekannte bayerische
Wuchsort ist ein von vielen Bächen durchzogener Mischwald, teils mit Auwaldcharakter.
Bild: Peter Karasch



2.7 Latschenfelder (Buschvegetation mit Pinus mugo)

Mountain pines (dwarf pine) often form extensive fields on block rubble fields and slopes of the subalpine zones from 1100 meters, which are often covered by snow until April / May. In the Bavarian Forest you can find these bush forests on the Lusen and Dreisessel. Little has been researched mycologically in the Bohemian Forest, but it is known from the Alpine region that a few dozen species of mushrooms can be found here.

Latschen am Lusen
Latschen am Lusen im April.  Bild: Peter Karasch
Pokalförmiges Haarbecherchen
Das Pokalförmige Haarbecherchen ist eine von mehreren Pilzarten an Latschentrieben,
die schon während der Schneeschmelze wachsen.
Bild: Peter Karasch


3. Sonderstandorte

3.1 Dungpilze auf Kuhfladen, Misthaufen und Pferdeäpfeln

The "bender-biotop" is a well-established term in the mycologist scene in Germany for all the remains of animals, whether from traditional agriculture with manure piles or in the forest on deer and wild boar droppings. Mushrooms have conquered every conceivable organic niche over the course of millions of years and live in harmony with nature. Some types of dung mushrooms specialize in one species (e.g. marmot), others are widespread in the use of all kinds of domestic animals such as cows, horses, sheep and goats. In any case, their number and variety of forms is so enormous that some mycologists have specialized solely in researching this ecological group of fungi.


Kuhfladen mit Düngerlingen
Der Abbau eines Kuhfladens, hier mit Düngerlingen, dauert eine Saison. 
Bild: Peter Karasch


Hirschlosung mit Mistborstlingen
Hirschlosung mit Mistborstlingen am Hochschachten, die bereits nach der
Schneeschmelze im Frühjahr erscheinen.   Bild: Peter Karasch


Ascozonus auf Mäusekot
Die winzigen Apothezien von Ascozonus whoolhopensis entwickeln sich auf Mäusekot während
der Schneeschmelze.   Bild: Peter Karasch


Kahlköpfe auf Pferdedung
Diese Kahlköpfe (P. coprophila) wachsen bevorzugt auf Pferdeäpfeln.  Bild: Peter Karasch


Stallmisthaufen mit Bolbitius coprophilus
Auf Stall Misthaufen können Dutzende Dungpilzarten wachsen.
Bild: Peter Karasch
Blasenbecherlinge sind sehr häufige Mistbewohner.   Bild: Peter Karasch


Der Wildschweinkot-Zärtling wächst exklusiv auf Wildschweinlosung.  Bild: Peter Karasch


Narkotischer Tintling
Mehrere Dutzend Tintlingsarten wie der Narkotische Tintling
wachsen auf Dung oder Stallmist.  Bild: Peter Karasch
Einige Arten wie dieser Kotling (Ascobolus immersus) haben sehr attraktive,
ornamentierte Sporen.  Bild: Peter Karasch


3.2 Brandstellen

Forest maintenance with burnt spots and coal brewing are as much a part of the Bohemian Forest as the tradition of glass making. To prevent forest fires, this old tradition is no longer just restricted in many areas, but completely prohibited. The fact that hundreds of moss, plants, fungi and animals that need mineral-rich fire places as a habitat was either not taken into account in this decision or weighted differently. In any case, the ban on open fires means accepting the endangerment and possibly the extinction of many species.

Brandstelle mit Kohlentintling
Brandstelle mit Kohlentintlingen      Bild: Peter Karasch                                   


Kohlentintlinge wachsen nur auf Brandstellen.   Bild: Peter Karasch  
Brandstelle mit Wurzellorchel
Brandstelle mit Wurzellorcheln   Bild: Peter Karasch
Die Wurzellorcheln erscheinen im Folgejahr an Brandstellen.  Bild: Peter Karasch


Brandstellen-Wimperlinge erscheinen oft schon nach wenigen Monaten
auf frischen Brandstellen. Bild: Peter Karasch
Brandstellen-Wimperlinge gehören zu den Schlauchpilzen.  Bild: Peter Karasch


4. Fließgewässer der planaren und montane Stufe

4.1 Bäche und Seigen

Especially in forest areas, large amounts of organic matter accumulate in slowly flowing streams, rivulets and drainage ditches. Bacteria and fungi can also use these food sources. More than 3000 aquatic fungi species are known worldwide. Many of them are microscopic, some larger species, often ascomycetes can be observed from branches or cones lying in the water starting in spring.

Habitat mit Sumpfhaubenpilzen
Langsam fliessende, auch stehende, flachgründige Gewässer sind
das ideale Habitat für den Sumpfhaubenpilz.  Bild: Peter Karasch
Der Sumpfhaubenpilz ist zitronengelb, kommt aber gelegentlich als Albino vor.
Bild: Gerhard Schuster


Wuchsort mit Tentakelkeulchen
Quellhang mit Tentakelkeulchen.  Bild: Peter Karasch


Tentakelkeulchen kann man schon im Frühjahr finden. Bild: Petra u. Werner Eimann


Quellhang mit Backenzahnkreisling
Quellhang mit Pestwurz und Backenzahnkreislingen auf einem Buchenast.
Bild: Peter Karasch
Backenzahnkreislinge kann man ebenfalls schon im Frühjahr finden.
Bild: Peter Karasch
Trematosphaeria hydrela
Sporen des aquatischen Pyrenomyceten Trematosphaeria hydrela
Bild: Andreas Gminder


Literature referenced in the text:

KRIEGLSTEINER L (2008): Pilzgutachten Himmelreich - Abschlussbericht (unveröffentlichtes Gutachten).

NATURA 2000 (2008): Management im Nationalpark Bayerischer Wald. Wissenschaftliche Reihe 17: 1-251.

NATURA 2000 (2018): Handbuch der FFH-Lebensraumtypen in Bayern.