Hannah Sycamore opened the wooden floorboards in her friend’s house after they became very wet (apparently due to a flood, though not specified). What she saw horrified her because it resembled something from science fiction or horror films.
She took a couple of photos and posted them on social media, asking if anyone knew what it was. Her post quickly went viral, but commenters were puzzled.
Mostly, opinions were expressed that these were the roots of some plant, overgrown mold, or mycelium. However, no one has yet been able to identify an exact match with any particular biological species.
“It’s new to me too. It’s definitely not like traditional mold,” said an expert from the State Herbarium in Brisbane, who was contacted by local reporters.
“The only thing I can say is that it looks vaguely like rhizomorphs of Armillaria, but that doesn’t provide much insight,” he added.
Mushrooms of the genus Armillaria (including common honey mushrooms) form the largest mycelium networks in the world. However, their rhizomorphs still look different from what has grown under Hannah Sycamore’s floorboards.
Another plant scientist, Elizabeth Aitken, from the University of Queensland, agreed it looked like fungal filament rhizomorphs and said samples needed to be taken for study.
Mycologist (mushroom expert) Heike Neumeister-Kemp also believes that it looks like mycelium and is confident that it is not at all dangerous to humans.