Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Shelf Fungus - Nature Notes

I noticed this strange thing growing out of one of the neighbor's trees. I snapped a few pictures and started doing some research on the net. And, what I found out was that this is a shelf, or bracket, fungus. Shelf fungus is pretty common. It is the half-circle shaped fungus that you commonly see on fallen trees. BUT, this is a specific type of a shelf fungus called a woody shelf fungus, or a "conk." This thing really does look and feel like wood. According to my research these conks grow on trees for years and years getting bigger and bigger.
This one is about the size of a big dinner plate. I am sharing this on Nature Notes at Ramblingwoods.com.
It is not a coincidence that it looks as though a branch was cut right by this. The fungus spore gets into the tree at the scene of an injury - just as an infection would get into our body.

22 comments:

  1. What an interesting looking fungus. Great shots.

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    1. Hey, Carver. Thanks for the nice comment, and thanks for coming by!

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  2. Wow! I have seen a bracket fungus before but nothing as big as this one. Interesting...and I loved your pics!

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  3. I wonder if it's harmful to the tree. Sure is an odd looking thing. Great picture.

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    1. Great question! I got mixed answers on that on the internet. Most answers were that it IS bad for the tree because it is, after all, getting all its nutrients from there since it can't directly access the ground.

      It is ODD looking isn't it? Really caught my attention :) Thanks!

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    2. rule of thumb - only unhealthy trees get fungus that will kill it. otherwise they have symbiotic relationships.

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    3. Ginger. Thanks! I was getting mixed answers on the Internet.

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  4. I learn something every day
    thanks
    it looks like a little awning

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  5. Thanks! I know-I was thinking someone should put a bird feeder under the little roof. Lol!

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  6. I wonder how it affects the tree - thats an amazing growth.

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  7. Wow..that is huge..I've never seen one that big around here..Interesting post for Nature Notes..thank you Libby...Michelle

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  8. Great shots of this fungus, Libby. It's quite large!

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  9. it is almost big enough to use as a roof. :)

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  10. go see my photo - http://gingersflowers.blogspot.com.br/2010/06/another-rio-weekend.html

    it looked like a partial cut was put in the tree and all its guts spilt out.

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  11. Here's a photo of one I just snapped yesterday while hiking in a nearby park. I spotted it from a good 50 ft away becase of it's size, I initially thought it was a bird house or something haha! Thanks for the info, I was dying to find out what it was.
    https://m.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10203582370784216&id=1363788505&set=a.1259973023796.2040303.1363788505&source=43

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    1. Darn the link didnt work :'(
      https://scontent-a-iad.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-prn2/t31/1658344_10203582370784216_1934843283_o.jpg

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