Experts share tips for success to finding morel mushrooms in Missouri

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ST. LOUIS — Morel hunting season is here and the Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) is sharing some tips on how to have success.

Here is some of the advice from a MDC employee:

  • Morels grow in wooded areas near sycamore, hickory, ash, and elm trees.
  • Use a mesh bag to keep the morels fresh while picking.
  • Use a knife or scissors to cut them. You can also pinch them with your fingers.
  • Use insect repellent.
  • Morel hunting season is near turkey hunting season, so try and avoid hunters and/or wear orange.
  • Morels blend in with the forest floor, so if you find one, look around and you are likely to find more.
  • Morels need warm, moist soil. Earlier in the season, start with southern and western slopes in a higher elevation. Later in the season, you can move to a lower elevation along the northern slopes.
  • Watch out for false morels, you don’t want to eat them. False morels are red, have a brain-like lobe, and are solid on the inside.

The MDC also has a guide to Missouri’s edible and poisonous mushrooms so you can hunt safely.

The MDC is hosting an online class April 21 to teach people about mushroom hunting.

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