A landmark publication highlighting the role fungi plays in the Island’s biodiversity has been published by the local fungus group and praised by a leading expert.
Checklist of Fungi of the Isle of Man provides a comprehensive list of the nearly 1,500 species of fungus recorded locally.
'This checklist represents the current state of our knowledge of the Island’s fungi, from the beautiful and newly discovered Butterscotch Waxcap and Violet Coral, which feature on the cover of the publication, to the striking orange rust fungus which occurs on Burnet Rose on the Ayres,' said Liz Charter, chair of the Isle of Man Fungus Group.
The checklist marks the group’s 10th anniversary in 2022 and is generously sponsored by Culture Vannin, whose Board member, Daphne Caine MHK, was at the launch.
She praised the booklet, saying: 'The checklist is an important tool for the conservation of fungi on the Isle of Man and will be an enduring record of the hard work of the Group since its inception.'
Edinburgh-based fungus expert Nev Kilkenny, who has mentored the group since it was formed and visits the Island regularly to lead fungus identification courses and teach microscopy techniques, described the publication of the checklist as 'an amazing achievement'.
The introduction to the checklist outlines the early recording of fungi and how the group started. The list catalogues both the common and scientific names of fungi, shows map squares where they occur, the number of records and the date of the last record. A recording form and fungus description template can be found in the back.
It will be especially useful to those identifying a fungus, helping them to know if it has been recorded on the island before and if so how recently, how often and where.
'We hope it will encourage others to add new records to help understand this little-studied kingdom of life,' explained Liz, who coordinated the project.
The checklist is dedicated to group member Michael Rodger, who became a good mycologist and has been greatly missed since he died in 2021.
The Fungus Group thanked other partners and individuals with whom it works to conserve fungi and their habitats: Manx Wildlife Trust, Manx National Heritage and the Department of Environment, Food and Agriculture. All were represented at the launch.
To obtain a copy of the checklist, priced £10, email the group on firstname.lastname@example.org