Milk lover (Lactarius volemus) Milk lover (Lactarius volemus) Milk lover (Lactarius volemus)

Red-brown Milk (Lactarius volemus)


  • Department: Basidiomycota (Basidiomycetes)
  • Subdivision: Agaricomycotina (Agaricomycetes)
  • Class: Agaricomycetes (Agaricomycetes)
  • Subclass: Incertae sedis (undefined)
  • Order: Russulales
  • Family: Russulaceae (Russula)
  • Genus: Lactarius (Miller)
  • Species: Lactarius volemus (Warbler)
    Other names for the mushroom:
  • Spurge


  • Thresher

  • Spurge

  • Galorrheus volemus
  • Lactifluus volemus
  • Amanita lactiflua
  • Lactarius lactifluus
  • Lactifluus oedematopus
  • Lactarius oedematopus
  • Lactarius ichoratus
  • Galorrheus ichoratus
  • Lactifluus ichoratus
  • Lactarius testaceus
  • Millechnik the best (by the way, the official Russian-language mycological name)
  • Bearing (Belarusian – Padareshnik)


Lactarius volemus (Fr.) Fr., Epicr. syst. mycol. (Upsaliae): 344 (1838)


A hat with a diameter of 5-17 (up to 16) cm, convex in youth, then prostrate, possibly pressed in the center, and even up to concave. The edge of the cap is straight, thin, sharp, tucked at first, then straightened and even raised. The color is reddish-brown, brownish-brown, in rare cases, rusty or light buffy. The surface is velvety at first, then smooth and dry. Often cracked, especially in drought. There is no zonal coloration.

Flesh: White, yellowish, very fleshy and firm. The smell is described in different ways, mainly as a herring (trimethylamine) smell, which increases with age, but there are more interesting associations, for example with pear flowers [2], or not indicated at all [1]. The taste is soft, pleasant, sweetish.

The plates are frequent, from adherent to weakly descending, cream or warm skin shades, often forked at the leg. There are shortened plates (plates).

Milky juice is abundant, white, turning brown and thickening in the air. For this reason, this type of lactarius turns brown and everything else if damaged – pulp, plates.

The leg is 5-8 (up to 10) cm high, (1) 1.5-3 cm in diameter, hard, often full, the color of the cap, but slightly paler, smooth, may be covered with fine pubescence, which looks like frostiness, but does not feel felt. Often tapered to the bottom.

Spore powder is white. Spores are close to spherical, according to [2] 8.5–9 x 8 µm, and according to [1] 9-11 x 8.5-10.5 µm. The ornamentation is ridged, up to 0.5 µm in height, forming an almost complete network.


Occurs from July to October. One of the earliest milkmen. Grows in deciduous, mixed and spruce forests (according to [1] – in general in all forests). According to [2], it forms mycorrhiza with oak (Quercus L.), common hazel (Corylus avellana L.) and spruce (Picea A. Dietr.).

Similar species

Considering the 'power' of this mushroom and the abundant brownish sweetish milky juice, perhaps, it has no similar species. The most similar lactic to him is, perhaps, the hygrophoroid lactarius – Lactarius hygrophoroides, but it is easily distinguished by not brownish milky juice and rare plates. Quite conditionally, rubella (Lactarius subdulcis) can be attributed to similar species, but it is thin-fleshed and slender. The same applies to the orange lactarius (Lactarius aurantiacus = L. mitissimus), it is not only small and thin, but also late, does not overlap in terms, although it grows in exactly the same biotopes with spruce.


An edible mushroom that can be eaten raw. It is good in damp salted or pickled form, without any heat treatment. I don't like it in another form because of the 'wooden' pulp, although, they say, mushroom caviar is good from it. I hunt him specifically and purposefully, for the sake of raw salting.

Literature Used 1) Verbeken, A. & Vesterholt, J. 2008. Lactarius. – In: Knudsen, H. & Vesterholt, J. (eds.): Funga Nordica, 82-107. 2) Flora of Belarus. Mushrooms. In 7 volumes. Volume 1. O.S. Gapienko, Ya.A. Shaporova, 2012, Boletales. Amanitales. Russulales.

Video about the miller mushroom:

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Hunting, Fishing and Mushrooms: a magazine for hunters and fishers.
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