Fungi report by Beverley Rhodes.

Members of the Kingdom Mycota are a distinctive group of microscopic organisms. They obtain nutrients either from their surroundings as saprophytes, living off the remains of plants and animals or products of their decay or they may live in association with other organisms either feeding off them as a parasite or in a mutually beneficial way such as lichens or mycorrhizal fungi with plant roots.

Fungi are an important part of every ecological community. Some species are found on very young or changeable sites whilst other species are part of much older sites where  habitats are relatively undisturbed, such as ancient woodland and species-rich grassland.

Recording in Derbyshire
Recording fungi locally remains a challenge for the recording community. Some areas are well recorded, having received frequent visits, including all times of year, followed up by an expert to accurately identify any critical material. There are some recorders who enjoy finding fungi but don't have the skills to identify to species level. Help is needed if this is to be overcome and everyone is urged to attend organised forays and use cameras to take photographs to aid in identification. There is a specific need for a fungus recording group in the county to coordinate local recording effort.

The British Mycological Society and the Association of British Fungus Groups are the main national organisations for fungi. BMS lead members on forays in different parts of the country and they are regular visitors to Derby. Some members are leaders in particular family groups of fungi and they have a scientific basis. ABFG have in recent times set up CATE2 which is an online mapping database that records species distribution from which it is intended to produce an up to date Red Data list while other mycologists provide records for the BMS recording database.

The National BAP priority species Oak Polypore, Piptoporus quercinus, is now known from two sites in Derbyshire and is a notable record but was not included in the 1996 Derbyshire Red Data list as it had not been found then. On the other hand Pink Waxcap, Hygrocybe calyptraeformis, once a Derbyshire Red Data Book species has now been found at many locations in the county.

Records from Woodside Nature Reserve
Only a small number of fungi were recorded during the Woodside Bioblitz but this was due largely to the time of year that the event took place. We invite you to have another look to provide up-to-date records to identify the true fungi community; you may even find the Giant Puffball, Langermania gigantean, which was recorded on the site a few years ago. Please leave it to spore and produce more!

Species Recorded During the Woodside BioBlitz
Psathyrella candolleana
Taphrina pruni
Puccinia poarum
Puccinia urticata var. urticata