Edible when young---but the authority was staying to the 'safe-side' by advising against it rather than allow a less than fully informed public to "tuck-in" without enough information as to the cut-off-point after which they are no longer fit to be eaten.
Problem is, (as the name "PUFF"ball implies) these fruiting (reproductive) bodies that form literally over night from the under ground mycelia (that break-down decaying matter, making it available as food to trees & ornamentals)... the "BALL" itself quickly matures into a hollow leathery spore case (Devil's Snuff) containing trillions of microscopic spores.. each of which having the potential of starting more underground colonies with the potential of creating more puff-balls etc etc etc etc etc etc
It was once estimated that IF every spore contained in a single puffball were allowed to reach maturity, the resulting weight and mass of the fruiting bodies would out-weight the Earth itself.
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