When family members call you up to say they’ve seen a “weird-looking thing on a tree” that’d probably a fungus of some sort, perhaps it’s too evident that you like searching for wood-decay fungi too much. But then again, why shouldn’t we love them? We need to be able to recognise them, understand what they do, why they do what they do, and what we need to do (if anything) in response to a positive identification. Trees support so many other organisms that, when learning about trees, we must learn about everything else as well.
So anyway, many thanks to the family member that gave me the heads-up on this ash tree last summer, as it’s probably the best example of Inonotus hispidus I have come across on my travels.