Pycnoporus cinnabarinus  - Although common names are not that useful for a lot of the fungi, you might see this one listed as the "Cinnabar red polypore".  It is really the only one that looks that bright and that shade of red when fresh.  As they dry, they can get more tan and even brown in color.

Photo: Arrows point to the fungus fruiting bodies of on  symplastless American Beech wood.  Picture was taken on 1-18-2005 in Maryland, USA.

Because the fertile, spore-bearing surface contains lots of pores and the fungus does not have much of a stipe or "stem", old-timers would put it in the genus "Polyporus".  Over the last hundred years, taxonomists have recognized that lumping all fungi that have pores and little or no stipe results in putting together some pretty unrelated fungi.  So, mycologists have set up "segregate genera" to break up the huge old and heterogeneous genera into smaller genera that make more sense, from the point of view of natural relatedness.  So before complaining about "Pycnoporus" being a new name, recognize that this name was coined in the 1890's!

"Pycnoporus" means "with small, dense pores".  Cinnabar is a bright red
mineral. It's a pretty descriptive name!

And, the Cinnabar polypore is usually found on symplastless wood of deciduous
trees, but can be rarely found on pines as well.

This fungus details and identification was provided by Kevin T. Smith, Ph.D.

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