Are mushrooms an extraterrestrial species invading earth and conquering the rest of the known universe? Sounds crazy I know, but before you dismiss the idea, spend some time with me and let’s explore that possibility. Did you know mushrooms are placed in a Kingdom of their own apart from plants and animals? They don’t contain any chlorophyll and they take up oxygen and produce carbon dioxide and they come in a wide variety of shapes and colors. There are 75 mushroom species that glow in the dark. And did you know that the largest living organism ever found is the honey mushroom in eastern Oregon and covers over 2200 acres? But what do mushrooms have to do with interstellar travel? Like no other form of life on our planet, the spores of mushrooms are almost perfectly suited for space travel. They can survive in a vacuum and are resistant to super low temperatures. The casing of a spore is one of the most electron dense materials in nature. It’s made from chitin which is one of the hardest materials found in nature. Mushroom spores have been found in every level of earth’s atmosphere. Their outer layer is actually metallic like and of a purple hue, which naturally allows the spore to deflect ultraviolet light. Spores can stay dormant for many, many years and still germanite. It seems mushrooms have found a way to survive the harsh vacuum of space. Every year, we are spending billions searching for alien life in our universe, but would we recognize alien life when we see it? What if mushrooms are in fact a highly evolved alien species that found a way to alter their dna that allows them to explore the universe? The are very resilient and adapt very easy to harsh environments. Under the right circumstances, mushrooms spores could hitchhike their way of any planet’s surface. That would allow them to colonize every single planet that offers them oxygen and some sort of compost. We have a predetermined idea of what alien life would look like: head, arms, legs, transfer information through written messages etc. It could well be that mushrooms consider humans as an inferior species and less evolved as they are. It’s true that as far as we know, no mushroom has ever written a 1000 page novel or created a mind blowing musical symphony, but maybe they have other ways to express their creativity. What we do know is that once mushrooms have established themselves, they create a vast underground neural network of mycelium that is very similar to the neural networks of the human brain. Could it be that mushrooms formed their own version of a thing we know as the internet? Research on mushrooms has increased drastically the last couple of years, so maybe we’ll find more interesting facts about these possible extraterrestrial visitors. What do you think, are mushrooms from space, are they our space overlords, or do they just taste yummy in a risotto? Make sure to leave a comment!
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