Saturday, 1 August 2015

Hypocreopsis rhododendri

Hazel Gloves

The common name of this rare fungus is somewhat misleading as is the case with the other, even rarer Hypocreopsis, Willow Gloves. It suggests that the species is found on Hazel, or in the case of Willow Gloves (which is one of the Lost & Found species), on Willow. 
 In fact both species are thought to be parasitic on species of Hymenochaete. In the case of Hazel Gloves it is thought to be parasitic on Hymenochaete corrugata, which is often, but not exclusively,  found on Hazel.

The fruiting body in the picture is growing on Blackthorn (Prunus spinosa). I also found it on Elder (Sambuccus nigra). Around 20 of these appeared at the beginning of the week, but many of them disappeared before reaching maturity, presumably eaten by slugs, beetles etc. The smallest specimens could easily have been confused as insect grubs living in the moss and I wonder whether they proved attractive to the many bird species living in the wood.

Hazel Gloves is a Red Data List species described as "near threatened", so I was more than pleased to find it growing in my wood.

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