Hiker discovers creepy alien-like creature that smells like “Rotting Flesh”
“WTF IS THIS?” – A Queensland hiker stumbled upon an unusual alien-like creature and had no clue what it was.
While exploring Mount Nebo, a popular Queensland trail, an adventurer discovered a mysterious creature. It was a red, star-fish-shaped growth that baffled the hiker, as well as a large Reddit community he shared a photograph of it with.
According to Daily Mail, the person who found the alien-like thing said it had an unpleasant scent reminding them of “rotting flesh.”
Unfortunately, Reddit users couldn’t explain what the creature was. One of them commented it “looks like something out of Resident Evil.”
However, the Chief Botanist and Director of Research at the Sydney Royal Botanic Gardens, Brett Summerell, later identified it as an Aseroe Rubra, or “starfish fungus.” It belongs to a family of mushrooms known as Stinkhorns and is infamous for its production of sticky brownish slime that emits a foul odor.
Queensland Health lists the stinkhorn as a Toxic Category 2.
Typically, Stinkhorn species are quite colorful and can be seen in various shapes, as well as form a net-like structure. It can be found in southeast Queensland, eastern New South Wales, eastern Victoria, Tasmania, and southeastern South Australia. Its rotten scent is produced to attract flies for pollination, who ingest and trample the spores to create new fungi colonies.
In case someone swallows the fungus, they should immediately seek medical help. Although the exact toxins inside the mushroom are unknown, they are generally known as gastro-irritants. Distressingly, there are also several death cases in small dogs that have ingested the fungus, as its smell is attractive to canines.