Species of the Month - October 2012

Dryad's Saddle

Polyporus squamosus

The Dryad's Saddle is a spectacular bracket fungus that grows on dead deciduous trees, often Sycamore but also Beech, Ash, Willow, etc, and helps to rot them down.  The NBN map shows very few records in NW Scotland, yet it has been seen 3 times by lnhg members in the last month, first at Dunollie by Margaret Powell-Joss, then on Mull by Cynthia Grindley, and finally we were shown it at Kinlochleven by Hamish Small.  The first two of these were on Sycamore, and the third was on an Ash which had been cut down to make a wooden seat.  The wooden seat was placed on the opposite side of the path to the remains of the Ash, and the fungus is now growing on both the seat and the tree it was made from!

Polyporus squamosus
Photo by Cynthia Grindley

The cap can be up to 60 cm wide and is orange-buff in colour, becoming browner as it matures.  It is covered in dark brown scales arranged in concentric rings, and is attached to the tree by a short stem.  The underside is white, creamy yellow or pale buff, and covered with angular pores about 1 mm across.

Polyporus squamosus
Photo by Cynthia Grindley

This may be an exceptionally good year for the fungus in our area so it will be interesting to see if there are any more sightings.  You're not likely to walk past one without noticing it.

Polyporus squamosus
Photo by Margaret Powell-Joss


Polyporus squamosus
Photo by Margaret Powell-Joss

Please send in your sightings using the form below.  If you are not sure of the identity of your fungus, please send a photo to sightings@lnhg.org.uk, or put one on the LORN forum and let me know it is there.

Date of sighting 
Grid reference 
Host tree 
Name of finder 
Your name (if different) 
Email (not needed if I already know it!) 
Any other details 


By filling in this form you agree that the information contained in this form may be collated and disseminated manually or electronically for environmental decision-making, education, research and other public benefit uses in accordance with the LNHG data access policy.  Your email address will not form part of the record and will not be passed on to anyone.

Carl Farmer
G Biological Records Manager

Note you can still send in records for past species of the month.  Here is the list of species we've had so far:

Sep 2012 - Tawny Grisette
Aug 2012 - Forest Bug
Jul 2012 - Grayling
Jun 2012 - Greater and Lesser Butterfly Orchids
May 2012 - Small Copper
Apr 2012 - Green Tiger Beetle
Mar 2012 - March Moth
Feb 2012 - Barren Strawberry
Jan 2012 - Brambling
Dec 2011 - Red Squirrel
Nov 2011 - Hazel Gloves
Oct 2011 - Small Tortoiseshell
Sep 2011 - Fly Agaric
Aug 2011 - Grass of Parnassus
Jul 2011 - Golden-ringed Dragonfly
Jun 2011 - 7-spot Ladybird
May 2011 - Green Hairstreak
Apr 2011 - Townhall Clock

Mar 2011 - Frogspawn

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All photos and other content copyright Carl Farmer except where stated