Forest fungi in Ireland
Forest fungi in Ireland - book launch, seminar and fungal foray
Friday 28 August 2009
Avondale, Rathdrum, Co Wicklow
In many European countries collecting mushrooms from the woods in autumn is a traditional activity. Fungal forays are becoming an increasingly popular pastime and provide an opportunity to explore the natural world. In Ireland, the lack of a foraging tradition as well as the absence of information has deterred collection. However, attitudes are changing and many are keen to know more about natural wild foods, and this is especially so for forest fungi.
Forest Fungi in Ireland is an outcome of the work of a COFORD Working Group on Forest Fungi established in mid 2006 and based on an earlier study undertaken by Louis Smith. He has collaborated with Dr Paul Dowding, a well known expert on fungi and related mycological research.
The publication, based on the authors experience in Ireland, is aimed at those interested in mushroom collecting and cooking. It includes a general history of edible fungi, information on the role of fungi in nature, and a simple classification. It provides guidelines on finding, using and preserving edible mushrooms, looks at the conservation of wild fungi and cautions on poisonous species.
COFORD's intention is to encourage identification, collection and use of fungi, and that it leads you to a new interesting and very rewarding past time as well as a possible extra source of income for farm forest owners and rural communities.
In conjunction with the launch of the publication, COFORD is hosting a half day seminar on forest fungi. In the afternoon the programme will continue with a fungal foray in Avondale's woods. Participants will have an opportunity for detailed identification of collected specimens. The day will conclude with the cooking and tasting of the collected fungi.
Book launch - Avondale House
09.30 Coffee in the main hall/drawing room of Avondale House
10.15 Launch of Forest Fungi in Ireland - Minister Tony Killeen, TD. Minister of State for Forestry, Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food
10.30 Presentations by authors Dr Paul Dowding and Louis Smith
Seminar - Church Hall, Avondale
Chairman: Diarmuid McAree, Forest Service
11.15 Fungi in farm forests - Dr Thomas Harrington, University of Limerick
11.35 Fungal diversity in Irish forest ecosystems - Richard O'Hanlon, University of Limerick
12.55 Forest fungi as non-timber forest products - Maria Cullen, University of Limerick
12.15 Forming a fungus group - the Northern experience - Dr Gerry Shannon (retired)
12.35 Demonstration of website - www.fungus.ie - Bill O'Dea
12:45 Questions and answers
13.00 Lunch in Avondale House
Fungal Foray - Avondale Woods
13.30 Fungal foray - a guided walk through the grounds to collect fungi
3.30 Identifications - with cookery demonstration and tasting outdoors if weather permits