Echinodontium tinctorum

Photo by Michael Beug

Commonly known as Indian paint fungus.

Description:  This conk fungus is shaped like a hoof.  It has a rough brown cap with gray to black teeth underneath.  It decays the heartwood leaving a stringy hollow inside that can increase the likelihood of breakage.      Though this fungus is sometimes described as a brown stringy rot, it actually mostly degrades the lignin leaving behind a white cellulose.

Identification:  This woody conk is between 5 cm to 20 cm in width (Goheen and Wilhite) and has a bright reddish orange color in its flesh.

Hosts:  True firs, such as Abies grandis, and hemlocks.

Distribution:  Common in our region.

General Information:  Indian paint fungus can have a devastating affect on old-growth true fir and hemlock stands, sometimes causing gross volume losses as great as 50% or more in old-growth stands.

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