This Sycamore in our woodland has been dead for more than a decade. The short remaining length of upright trunk has only Ganoderma fungi growing round the stem.

Two separate lengths of this tree that lie on the ground have only Hoof Fungus–Fomes fomentarius, growing extensively along their rotting trunks.

It is said that dead trunks remaining upright have a different suite of fungi than trees lying on the ground.

I believe Hoof Fungus is not often seen in Calderdale, so I am pleased to have found such a large gathering. Books always say it has a preference for Birch but not in this case. Thanks go to Peachy Steve who helped confirm the identity and steered me away from Ganoderma pfefferi.

Interesting facts about Hoof Fungus:– The flesh of the fruit bodies can be soaked in water, cut into strips and then beaten into fibres. The resultant fibres are called Amadou, which was used by dentists for drying teeth and surgeons as a styptic. Items of clothing have also been made from the Amadou fibres.

The 5,000 year old Otzi the Iceman was carrying pieces of Hoof Fungus, probably for use as tinder to light a fire.

                                                         Ganoderma (applanatum?)

                                                      From below, showing the pores

                                                         Close up of Ganoderma

Fomes fomentarius–Hoof Fungus

                                  Waxy surface which led me to initially consider G. pfeifferi

                                          Hoof fungus showing pore pattern from below