Key to Gilled Mushrooms Key
This is a key to gilled mushrooms, that is, mushrooms having a definite cap with a fertile surface consisting of gills. The fruiting body usually also has a stem, although that may be lateral or absent (usually, then, the mushroom is growing from wood). You can use this key to identify mushrooms that you find.
Fertile surface usually a layer of vertical tubes, of which the mouths are visible as pores on the underside of the cap or shelf.
Fruiting bodies usually tougher or harder than the "normal" gilled mushrooms, being leathery, corky, or woody. But they can be quite tender while actively growing
Once grown, they do not decay easily, remaining on the substrate for months or years
They often grow on wood, although a few are terrestrial (even those are usually growing on buried wood)
Fruiting body is usually a flat shelf, or hoof-shaped, protruding directly from the substrate, although sometimes it may have a short stalk.
Some forms never grow away from the substrate at all, so that all that is visible of the fruiting body are the pores.
Sometimes the pores are so minute that the fertile surface seems solid, until you look closely
Growing on wood
Red Polypore Tribe
The pores red, pink, or orange-red, or the cap at least partially one of those colors
Red Cap Polypore Subtribe
Cap at least partly red, pink or red-orange
Pore surface white to pale buff, but may discolor reddish
- Entire cap red, pink, or reddish-brown
Fruiting body fleshy, not hard or tough; if fresh, exuding a red, blood-like juice when cut or squeezed
Walls of each tube separate; tubes often of different length, giving the fertile surface a tongue-like appearance
- The character that Fistulina is based on is that the tubes do not share their walls with the tubes next to them; rather, each tube is free-standing, and they can be easily pulled away from one another
Narrow down your identification:
Fruiting body can be stipitate or sessile, bright pink to red to purplish brown
Cap and stipe often minutely bumpy in a way that resembles a tongue
Cap often wrinkled (on top and internally) in a way that resembles muscle fibers