Skip to Content

New Jersey Poison Control warning residents about dangerous, wild mushrooms and toxic health effects

<i>WCBS</i><br/>New Jersey's poison control center is warning residents about harmful
New Jersey's poison control center is warning residents about harmful

By CBSNewYork Team

Click here for updates on this story

    NEW JERSEY, NJ (WCBS) — New Jersey’s poison control center is warning residents about harmful, wild mushrooms that are in season.

As CBS2’s Meg Baker reported Thursday, our recent weather is contributing to their growth.

Foragers beware.

“It’s really hard to identify a toxic from a non-toxic mushroom,” said Dr. Diane Calello, head of the New Jersey Poison Control Center at Rutgers.

Dr. Calello said the center gets calls about exposure to mushrooms around this time every year.

Many don’t realize some wild mushrooms can be deadly. It’s best to steer clear of them all, she said.

“Liver failure. That is really hard, if not impossible, to fix once it’s underway. And it can look to some people like a pretty benign mushroom. It’s called the emanated mushroom and it’s white,” Dr. Calello said. “It’s kind of pleasant looking and, to some people, it looks like an edible mushroom and that’s why it’s so dangerous.”

This is mushroom-growing season – a perfect mix of heat, humidity, and moisture before the first frost.

“The warmer the temperatures are, the more moisture the atmosphere can hold,” said CBS2 meteorologist Justin Lewis. “We have seen many thunderstorm events around the area.”

“People do like to forage for mushrooms, and I guess you could think of people being home more, outdoors more with the COVID pandemic, that might increase foraging behavior,” Dr. Calello said.

There are also concerns for pets.

“They can have liver failure or some of the other symptoms we see with other mushrooms, like diarrhea or delirium and hallucinations, or a lot of other symptoms,” said Dr. Calello.

She said don’t trust plant identification apps to tell you if a mushroom is safe and that cooking won’t prevent toxic health effects.

It’s best to shop for mushrooms at the grocery store.

If you have mushrooms in your yard, experts advise digging them up and disposing of them.

Please note: This content carries a strict local market embargo. If you share the same market as the contributor of this article, you may not use it on any platform.

Article Topic Follows: CNN - Regional

Jump to comments ↓

Author Profile Photo

CNN Newsource


News Channel 3-12 is committed to providing a forum for civil and constructive conversation.

Please keep your comments respectful and relevant. You can review our Community Guidelines by clicking here

If you would like to share a story idea, please submit it here.

Skip to content