* Please note: I am an amateur when it comes to plant and animal identification, I fully accept that my identification could be completely incorrect, but hey, I tried! Do not eat anything unless you have it identified by an experienced mycologist.
Every week I take an amble through nature just to refresh the brain. Every time I go I find some feature that I never noticed before especially when I go with my observant kids. This week’s find was a group of mushrooms with the name of turkey tails. How can you not love a mushroom with that name!
In the spirit of lifelong learning, here are some facts about turkey tail mushrooms.
- The name turkey tail is derived (obviously) from the tail of a wild turkey which has a similar banded appearance.
- It is located on many types of hardwood.
- One of the most common North American shrooms.
- They are edible, but are mainly consumed in tea form as they tend to be tough.
- It is believed to be a medicinal mushroom which boosts the immune system to fight infection and some kinds of cancers; though, some of the websites I perused stated that this is a myth.
- These mushrooms act as a decomposing agent, digesting the organic material from the rotting log and returning the nutrients to the soil. Nature is so beautifully efficient.
Now there is a definite chance that I located a false turkey tail and will need to return back to the spot where I found them to investigate further as I need to have a look at the underside of the mushroom to see where the spores are located. Yay, another adventure!
Nature alone is an antique, and the oldest art a mushroom. – Thomas Carlyle
If you want to know more, here are a few sites I used for research purposes: