Violet Coral fungus at Elphin

December 19th 2018

Helen O’Keefe photographed this very striking club fungus on the hill behind the crofts at Elphin (NC2110) on 8th October 2018. It had a branched fruiting body of an unusual shade of pinkish-violet. Bruce Ing was able to confirm her suspicions that it might be the Violet Coral Clavaria zollingeri, a species he says is ‘rare up here and never common’.

Although the books have it inhabiting ‘damp woodland areas’ or ‘impoverished acidic sites’, Helen found it in exposed limestone grassland, which is interesting.  The only other known record from Assynt is of a clump found by Andy Summers beside the path up the north side of Suilven (NC1518), on 29thAugust 2017 (Rare fungus found on Suilven).

Fungi often cannot be precisely named from photographs, since it may be necessary to examine their spores under a microscope or look at other characters that are only discernible in a specimen.  This is one of the happy exceptions, so it is worthwhile taking photos, and sending them to the Field Club, if the subjects look really distinctive.

Ian M.  Evans

Report a Sighting

Recent Sightings

Greylag Goose

Eleven birds feeding on margins of frozen Loch an Aigeil (AS) (22/01)

Common Gull

Flock of 29 feeding on Stoer Green (AS) (21/01)

Goldfinch

c20 birds on garden trees, Drumbeg (Nancy Millar) (17/01)

Great Spotted Woodpecker

Two separate reports of birds using peanut and fat ball feeders in gardens at almost opposite ends of Assynt. Single bird on peanut feeder, Elphin (Rosie Christmas) Single bird on fat ball feeder, Culkein Drumbeg (Carol Langford) (17/01)

Twite

26 birds at Split Rock, Clachtoll (AS) (16/01)

Fieldfare

Small flock of 20 at Clachtoll (AS) (16/01)

Goldcrest

Single bird foraging under garden feeders, Torbreck (Jack Wright) (14/01)

Dipper

Three birds on River Inver opposite Little Assynt Tree Nursery (DAH). At least one of these birds was singing. (12/01)

Map