(Member of the Fungus Conservation Trust - Registered Charity No. 1118651)
Current news of interest to Fungal Friends.

17th November 2014 - Flintshire Leader Article

The article below is from the Flintshire Leader and was sent my way by two observant members from that neck of the woods. It all helps the cause (I hope).

Thanks to the author Rhian Waller for her efforts.


14th November 2014 - Chadkirk Chapel Review

And here is a review from the recent Fungal Friends meet-up at Chadkirk Chapel - sincere thanks to Michael Pettipher once again - it all helps. Click here to read the lowdown.


12th November 2014 - More Inkcap dabbling

This time from Linda Jones using nothing more than the specified ink and a seagulls feather - pure DIY! The minimalism appeals.


9th November 2014 - Review

A short and sweet write-up of the day at Meer Sands Wood this year by Linda Jones:-

Fungal Foray at Mere Sands Wood. 11 October 2014

It was a lovely autumn day after a few weeks of dry weather. A group of people of very mixed ages and previous experience of fungi gathered at this Wildlife Trusts reserve in west Lancashire, to look for and learn about fungi with Fungalpunk Dave.

We started with a brief introduction to the life-cycles and biology of fungi, and a look at a few species close at hand to illustrate the variety of forms they might take. Then we set off around the wood to see what we could find.

There were lots of common species such as Turkey Tail, Coral Spot and Hairy Stereum – all very familiar to the old hands – but still described with patience and enthusiasm to the newcomers.

There were species with unusual shapes or habits – like the Earth Potatoes and Puffballs, or the downright notorious Stinkhorn.

There were little tiny things – the smuts, rusts and woodwarts, and big bulky boletes and brackets.

Lots of different colours, dull browns, pure white, bright yellow and scarlet, and some distinctive smells.

Find of the day had to be Entomophthora muscae – spotted by Dave’s daughter, Katie. It’s a delightful little organism that infects flies via their air tubes, migrates to their brain, changes their behaviour so that they climb up trees, before killing them and producing fruiting bodies between their body plates. All so its spores are released high up and catch the wind. Lovely!

Dave was a bit unhappy with the fungal season so far as the dry weather had not brought out so many fruiting bodies as might have been, and he’s always keen make these events as interesting as possible for those attending. But with around seventy species identified on the day and more taken home for microscopy the final total came to 85. Certainly no complaints from me.

Cheers to Linda for her kind efforts.


5th November 2014 - FOAM Newsletter/Pics/Artwork

The latest newsletter from FoAM (Friends of Anderton and Marbury) is out now and features an article on the recent foray I led there. See here for details. Thanks to Brenda Yates for her endeavours and encouragement.

Here are some pictures from John Ratcliffe from a few forays. The first is from Tatton Park and is the Golden Pholiota (Pholiota aurivella) and the second is from Moore NR and is Lepista panaeola.

Cheers John.

And finally here is my feeble attempt at drawing a specimen of Coprinus comatus using the said species' ink. I had 2 attempts, alas no improvement but I have had a go.


2nd November 2014 - Coprinus comatus pics

I recently sent an invite to all friends and members requesting them to try and draw a chosen inkcap using nothing more than the ink of the selected species. I am still waiting on many but here is the first entry by John 'Ratty' Ratcliffe - a fine effort indeed.

Nice one indeed sir!


23rd October 2014 - Review

Here is a review of the recent foray to Etherow CP done by Michael Pettipher - click here please.


5th October 2014 - Testing times

The dry spell has knocked the stuffing out of the season up this neck of the woods and so daily totals are not what can be expected. Last year the finishing average of species seen on each walk was 88, this year, after 11 walks, we are standing at a lowly 56 with a few very poor day returns. We crack on, I have 9 walks left to lead - by hook or crook we have got to find some good rewards for our efforts - keep trying folks. Just to note as well with regular member John Ratcliffe (Ratty) doing his marvellous mooching we still have a fighting chance of some good hauls yet - big up for John and his sterling efforts and grand company - nice one mate.


1st October 2014 - Feedback

Here is a little bit of feedback from a recent event:-

'The guided walk was excellent and I would wholeheartedly recommend David and his talk to anyone. Your right he is very knowledgeable but his knowledge is brought to life and made fascinating with his enthusiasm and love of the subject. A great morning walk which has inspired us to look more closely and appreciate the things we see on our walks in the countryside'.

* * *

'Thank you so much for organising the Mushroom Foray last Sunday, it  was a most enjoyable and informative day and Fungal Punk Dave certainly lived up to his formidable reputation by managing to show us some fifty-odd species, despite this having been the driest September in living memory. I was on both the morning and afternoon walks and it was quite obvious that everyone thoroughly enjoyed themselves (including the charming Lady of the House!) and I suspect, and hope, several people caught the fungi "bug" Once again, many thanks Helen and to FP Dave for a brilliant day'.

Very nice to hear.


22nd September 2014 - The season tests the temperament

So far the 4 walks led have been done in dry conditions with each walk offering less and less fungal fruit? It has been a trial and looking at the forecast no dramatic downpours are coming anytime soon. In spite of a real bad turn ouit of Fungi at Formby the following feedback keeps me determined to keep the head down and keep mooching -   'In spite of the absence of fungi, you made it just the very best for all those involved.    Thank you so much'. I do try!

Group wise we have a few new comrades in the mix with whom I hope to catch up with soon as I am aiming to do a group walk on the 12th of October at Etherow - let us hope for a good turn out and a good haul.


4th September 2014 - The season begins

I have just completed a private survey at Crompton Moor and it seems, judging by the list of 68 species, that the season is well and truly upon us. Targets for this season are simple - to enthuse the public, to increase the knowledge of the group and to get others taking an active role and begin the recording process. You have been warned.

I shall be having a word with Michael Jordan at HQ and seeing about how to get others access to the database and start inputting their records - as soon as I know, you shall know too. Other than that - here's to a good season with plenty of new sightings, plenty of grand company and just some general enjoyment from this remarkable world.