Trametes hirsuta on a fallen beech (Fagus sylvatica)

You’d be mistaken for thinking Epping Forest is comprised of a pure beech monoculture, though it’s simply a case of most of the interesting fungi being found on the very old beech pollards on the site. Hand on heart, there’s at least one hornbeam, three oaks, and three wild service trees in the forest!

This fungus I had initially thought was Pseudotramates gibbosa (‘the stumpgrinder’), though Ted Green remarked that it was in fact Trametes hirsuta (syn. Coriolus hirsutus). This is because the latter has small and circular pores, in place of a more maze-like underside. Ted Green went on to comment that this fungus is not overly common in the UK, as it thrives in the warm and dry climates of mainland Europe more so than it does here. However, in recent years it has been found in the South East, and it may work its way northwards in time.

In this case, its colonisation on the upper surface of this downed beech stem is telling, as this region of the wood substrate is going to be drier and more exposed (and thus warmer). Such conditions are far more suitable than what is found on the underside.

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A very neat arrangement of sporophores, in absolute abundance.
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Atop, it appears to be very similar to Pseudotrametes gibbosa.
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But beneath, the pore structure is different. Not a good photo, and in hindsight I’d have got a better one, but alas!
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Trametes hirsuta on a fallen beech (Fagus sylvatica)

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