One of Britain’s rarest fungi

Date Waxcap - The Hall of Einar - photograph (c) David Bailey (not the)

So you think it doesn’t look like much? I think it looks fabulous. It’s growing in the short grass around a car park on Dartmoor. It’s the Date Waxcap, Hygrocybe spadicea, one of Britain’s rarest fungi. It’s classified as a vulnerable species, so the Date Waxcap is a priority species under the UK Biodiversity Action Plan, and is included in English Nature’s Species Recovery Programme. In the UK it is scattered in tiny populations across parts of Wales, Cumberland, Shropshire, Devon and the island of Colonsay in the Hebrides. It’s easy to kill by stopping grazing which removes its food, applying artificial fertiliser which poisons it or by ploughing, which cuts it to ribbons.

It’s so special, it’s even got its own distribution map in the National Biodiversity Network here.

Since it’s so rare, maybe I should have taken a better photograph of it?

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