The Fungi World (337) : Hoof Fungus
This fungus was used by ancient nomadic people as tinder for fire starting and to transport the fire from one place to another as it burns very very slowly and can smoulder for many hours.
Each year, the hoof fungus gets wider as this fungus gets a new annual growth each spring.
The big specimen in my shot must be already more than 10 years old !!!
Dutch name : Echte tonderzwam
German name : Zunderschwamm
Latin name : Fomes fomentarius
Something VERY interesting to know :
The hoof fungus is one of the fungi that the "Iceman" had with him.
You remember the Ötzi Iceman, don’t you ? An incredibly well-preserved 5000 year old Neolithic man found in 1991 in a glacier near the border of Austria and Italy.
During profound scientific research of the content of Ötzi’s pouch, the scientists found berries, a dozen of different plants, 2 birch bark baskets, and 2 fungi species : the hoof fungus (as part of a kit to make fire) and the birch polypore (known to have antibacterial properties and was probably used for medicinal purposes).