I found this short and fiendishly difficult quiz on British mushrooms. Quiz on FirstNature
And some facsinating fungi facts here from the BBC Apparantly there are more than 3,000 different types of mushrooms and toadstools in the UK.
And a series of PDFs to promote awareness and understanding of fungi from the BMS.
Mushrooms: River Cottage Handbook comes recommended as both inspirational and practical. Author John Wright captures the fun of picking edible wild fungi and then transforming them into delicious meals. Packed with mushroom-lore and illustrations, with a section on poisonous fungi, it’s small enough to take out on forays. Particularly good for transmitting confidence to novice pickers.
If you’re new to wild mushrooms, the best way to learn the ropes is to go foraging with an experienced group. Fungus.org.uk has a list of links to local groups who organise forays into the wild. There’s also a forum on Wild Mushrooms Online for connecting with fungus enthusiasts in your area, as well as an extensive well-illustrated section about different edible species (such as the Morels pictured above). But the sheer fascinating proliferation of fungi means a guidebook or web page are never enough, as the best ones will warn you. It’s never that clear-cut out in the field.
Mrs Tee’s Wild Mushrooms, based in the New Forest, supplies individuals and restaurants and runs wild mushroom courses for the public.
All the wild mushrooms they sell are harvested by hand from the New Forest by an experienced team of local pickers. They also have a wide range of exotic cultivated mushrooms
They sell these wild mushrooms:
- Ceps Rufus (Red)
- Pied du Mouton
- Chanterelle Brown
- Hen of the Wood
- Chicken of the Wood
- Mousseron de Pres
- Mousseron St George
- Honey Fungus
- Sparissis Crispa
- Mixed Boletes
- Bay Boletes
- Trompette de Mort
This one-day course enables guests to learn invaluable information about the identification, seasonality, preparation and use of both wild and cultivated mushrooms that they can take back and use in their own kitchens at home. The day includes a guided excursion into the New Forest with the expert herself, to forage for and pick their own mushrooms. Importantly, guests will also be taught which mushrooms are not safe to cook and eat.
The Guardian reviewed these fungi courses last year
I’m on a seminar at Gorse Meadow Guest House near Lymington with 10 other fungi fans, delving into the fascinating world of mushrooms. There are, I learn, around 3,000 types in the New Forest alone, but we’re only interested in identifying about 10 edible varieties. Read
If youy fancy going it alone the New Forest Park website
offers the following guidelines on picking wild mushrooms:
- Go out with someone who knows what they are looking at
- Follow the fungi pickers code
- Don’t mix edible & non edible species in a basket
- Identify the exact species
- If you are trying a new one, eat a small amount
And the Fungi Collectors Code for the New Forest is:
- No commercial collecting
- Obey any warning signs
- Never remove all the fungi in one area
- 1.5kg personal limit (and if you’ve found this much you’ve done well!)
- If you don’t know what it is, it may be rare – leave it alone
Nature and wildlife of Britain