Wild mushrooms often look like harmless edible mushrooms, but are poisonous. A few bites of these mushrooms can cause severe illness such as vomiting and diarrhea, damage to vital organs, and, in some cases, death. Poisonous mushrooms often grow in yards and parks.
Even those with experience with mushrooms can be fooled; all New Jersey residents should be aware of the dangers of eating wild mushrooms. In addition, children should be taught never to put wild mushrooms, plants, berries, or nuts into their mouths. Pets are susceptible to poisons found in lawns and gardens, as well.
The Mercer County Division of Public Health has partnered with New Jersey Poison Information and Education System (NJPIES), the state’s regional poison control center, to provide information on emerging health and safety educational topics. If you have questions about poisonous mushrooms or other plants, help is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, from NJPIES at 800-222-1222. All calls are free and confidential, and when needed, NJPIES responds to other emergent health issues by expanding hotline services. New Jersey residents are encouraged to save NJPIES’ number in their mobile phones and post it somewhere in their residences.