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Kielder Northumberland fungi foraging workshops in September. Learn what’s edible and what’s deadly!

Other posts by  |  Sheelagh Caygill on Google+ |  September 4, 2012 | 0 Comments
Northumberland fungi

Looks interesting, but is it deadly? Fungi expert Gordon Beakes says be careful what you pick if you go on a forage

Fungi season will be here very soon. But it is vital that you know what is edible and what is deadly before you go out fungi foraging in Northumberland this autumn.

Experts warn that scores of species of fungi will be sprouting forth over the autumn in Northumberland, and they are a special part of Northumbrian wildlife on the wildlife calendar. But there’s no simple way of telling the tasty ones from those which are deadly.

Now, though, the Forestry Commission has teamed up with leading experts to stage public forages on 16 September in Kielder Water & Forest Park and two longer workshops at Kielder Castle on 29 and 30 September.

“Fungi are vital to the forest eco-system, so if you do pick them do so sparingly,” said Gordon Beakes, from Newcastle University, who has studied the subject for 30  years. “The key thing is to be cautious. Some gourmet species look very similar to lethal specimens like the Death Cap. The UK has over 4,000 different species so it can be bewildering.  And just because a fungus is brightly coloured doesn’t necessarily mean its poisonous.  Meanwhile the pure white Destroying Angel lives up to its name. The only way to identify them is to arm yourself with knowledge.”

Fungi walks on 16 September meet at Kielder Castle at 10.30am and 2pm and cost £6 (£5 concessions/£16 family of four).

The longer workshops (29/30 Sept) cost £25, including light lunch.  Suitable for beginners and more advanced foragers alike, you will be able to sort through specimens and learn to how recognise their key features.

Booking is essential for these popular events on 01434 250209, or by calling at Kielder Castle Visitor Centre. 


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