Today a grey squirrel helped me solve a mystery. For the last week I’ve been smelling something really sweet in the woods which I was convinced was a fungi but wasn’t able to trace it.
As I watched the squirrel in the branches of an old beech, it was feeding on something white and then discarding most of it before grabbing another bit.
I went to the base of the tree and saw it had been feeding on porcelain fungi, Oudemansiella mucida. It has a really slimy cap but the squirrel had been scraping off the gills and discarding the slimy bit. I sniffed the remains and sure enough, that’s what I’ve been smelling all week!