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Hedgehog Fungus

Edible Edible
Autumn Autumn
Summer Summer

A very safe mushroom for novice foragers and very tasty too.

Mushroom Type
Common Names Hedgehog Fungus (EN), Wood Urchin, Wood Hedgehog, Pied-de-mouton (FR), Pigau Draenog y Coed (CY), Kolczak Obłączasty (PL), Sárga Gereben (HU)
Scientific Name Hydnum repandum
Season Start Aug
Season End Oct
Average Mushroom height (CM) 4-8
Average Cap width (CM) 4-8
Please note that each and every mushroom you come across may vary in appearance to these photos.


4-8 cm. Convex, can be uneven and even depressed in the middle. Creamy yellow to pale flesh/salmon pink coloured.


This mushroom has spines, hence the name Hedgehog, which are white to salmon pink, growing up to 6mm long. The spines continue down the stem a short distance (decurrent).


4-8 cm long, 1.5-3 cm diameter. White, slightly downy where the spines run down the stem. The stem is often not central in the cap.


Off-white. Bruising pale yellow especially towards the base.


Growing in rings in most types of woodland.

Possible Confusion

The Greenfoot Tooth (Hydnellum scabrosum) is similar but with a dark brown, scaly cap and stem, this mushroom is quite rare and considered by some as poisonous although it is eaten in some countries dried, powdered and used as a pepper like condiment.
The Terracotta Hedgehog (Hydnum rufescens), pictured, is a smaller, terracotta coloured mushroom from the same family and is edible.
The Jelly Tooth (Pseudohydnum gelatinosum) has spines but is very jelly like in texture and grows from wood and is edible if a little bland.
The Hedgehog Fungus is a very safe mushroom for the novice forager as long as you find a light coloured mushroom growing from the ground with a stem and spines instead of gills it can’t be anything else.

Spore Print

White. Broadly ellipsoid to subglobose.

Taste / Smell

Excellent, sweet, nutty and with a crunchy texture, a gourmet mushroom. Can be slightly bitter when raw.


Fairly common.

Other Facts

This is a pretty drought resistant mushroom and can be found in dry Autumns when other mushrooms struggle.


11 comments for Hedgehog Fungus

  1. Jon West says:

    Isn’t this fungus protected Under the Schedule 8 legislation for protected species so therefore illegal to pick?

    1. Poppy Ives says:

      Hi Jon, the fungus listed as Hedgehog Fungus in Schedule 8 of the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 is the Hericium erinaceum which is more commonly known as the Lion’s Mane mushroom. The mushroom we refer to as the Hedgehog Fungus is the Hydnum repandum, which is fairly common in the UK. Different people often use different common names for the same plant or mushroom which can get confusing, so it’s always best to go by the scientific name if researching something similar in the future.

  2. Jek says:

    Just found some of these for the scone time in a local woodland, too bad the slugs beat me to it! I managed to take a few specimens which were almost untouched, I don’t mind a little damage.

    The flavour when raw I thought was quite meaty, couldn’t relate it to any meat in particular but mushrooms are closer to animals than plants anyway so technically all mushrooms are meat.

  3. Tom Lake says:

    Found this for first time near Crieff in Perthshire yesterday. This ID was, as ever, a brilliant explainer. Thanks Arlo 🙏

    1. Neily McCormick says:

      I’m quite nearby in Methven. I was going to have look for white hedgehog mushrooms in the local woodland here this weekend. Hopefully I’ll be successful.

  4. Mick says:

    Lots of these at the moment in East Sussex, and late in the year it would seem.

    Great website BTW!

  5. Rich G says:

    Found something very similar to this but growing from a tree stump, not the ground – any ideas?

    1. Poppy Ives says:

      potentially the tiered tooth, which is not in our guide yet and a rare find.

  6. Marek says:

    Tasty mushroom. We found some this weekend in Ontario, Canada

  7. Piotr says:

    found this mushroom for the first time this year. when you find this mushroom look around, there must be more hidden. Good for soups and nice with pasta.

  8. Jonathan Freer says:

    Found alot growing along a 10 metre long wind / mycelium line in woodland in East Devon. They were all good condition for the time of year and not too wet of eaten by slugs.

    Thaks for detailed desrciptions of the different fuingi – very helpful!

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