False turkey tail

False turkey tail

Stereum ostrea

It is often fan-shaped, semicircular or irregularly kidney-shaped. It is densely velvety or hairy at first but then becomes smoother as it matures. It has concentric rings of red, orange, yellowish, brown and buff shades. Often it is colored green due to an alga that grows on it. There is no stem. Underneath it is smooth and whitish to grayish or pale reddish brown. It is ½ inch to 3 inches wide.

This mushroom grows on the dead wood of hardwoods, especially oaks, in dense overlapping clusters. It grows in spring, summer, fall and winter and is common in Fontenelle Forest.

Like true turkey tail this fungus has bands on it that remind one of a turkey tail. The main difference between this fungus and the similar turkey tail is found underneath. False turkey tail lacks a pore surface and therefore is smooth underneath (In other words it is a crust fungus and not a pore fungus). You often need a hand lens to determine the absence of pores.

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