Monday, 5 October 2009

GFG Foray: Afan Argoed Park

Today was the first foray for the Glamorgan Fungus Group at Afan Argoed park. As sometimes happens on a foray, we begin not finding a lot then, at the very, very end, it's ten or more finds all at once!
Next time, perhaps we should begin at the end?

Laccaria laccata/The Deciever

There were many fungi that live on trees. Ploypores, crusts, jellies and more.

Stereum hirsutum/Hairy Curtain Crust
Ascocoryne sarcoides/Purple Jellydisc

Xylaria hypoxylon/Candle Snuff Fungus
Stereum rugosum/Bleeding Broadleaf Crust
One of the identifiers for this crust fungi is the brick red staining that occurs when the surface is scratched, as seen below.

Piptoprus betulinus/ Birch polypore.
This is a young and old fungi, and one with a use: It was found in an ice mummy, named Otzi, who died 5'300 years ago and its uses are debated, although its' blade sharpening properties were known even in victorian times which was called stroping.
Stroping meant sharpening blades which is where the alternative name of 'Razor fungus' comes from. It's also regarded as an antibiotic because it has oils which staves off internal insect attacks like worms..

Hypholoma fasciculare: Sulpher Tuft
The fungi grows in troops, often on rotting wood in both decidous and coniferous woods.

The gills of Hypholoma fasciculare have a yellow-green appearence and the stipe is greenish yellow-brown. The striking colour of the gills is a good identifier.

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