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Turkey Tail

Inedible Inedible
Autumn Autumn
Spring Spring
Summer Summer
Winter Winter

A small size bracket fungus with multicoloured, zonated, faintly hairy skin and white pore surface.

Mushroom Type
Common Names Turkey Tail (EN), Cynffon Twrci (CY), Wrośniak Różnobarwny (PL), Lepketapló (HU)
Scientific Name Trametes versicolor
Season Start All Year
Season End All Year
Average Mushroom height (CM)
Average Cap width (CM)
Please note that each and every mushroom you come across may vary in appearance to these photos.

Fruiting Body

2–8(10) cm across, fan-shaped, irregularly semicircular, or even rosette-like, usually in groups. Margin mostly white, off-white or buff. Its skin is faintly hairy (tomentose), velvety, often shiny when young, with concentric multicoloured zones, or covered by algae with age.


Tubes up to 3 mm long, white. Pores 3–5 per mm, circular to angular, white.


Thin, up to 3 mm thick, flexible-leathery, white when young, creamy or buff with age.


On dead hardwood logs, trunks and fallen branches, rarely on conifers too, in rows or tiers. Saprotrophic, causes white-rot.

Possible Confusion

Smoky bracket (Bjerkandera adusta), pictured, has a greyish pore surface.
Ochre bracket (Trametes ochracea) has less colour on its cap and different brown colours are the dominant, mostly found on birch, but rather common on beech and poplar too, however it is a much less common mushroom.
Hairy curtain crust (Stereum hirsutum) has no visible pores at all, its underneath is smooth and yellow, while false turkey tail (Stereum ostrea) has smooth, reddish brown to reddish buff underneath, and its cap is less hairy (tomentose) than hairy curtain crust’s.

Spore Print

Spore print is white. Spores are colourless (hyalin), narrow-cylindric (sausage-like) and smooth.

Taste / Smell

Inedible, without distinct taste or smell.


Very common and widespread.

Other Facts

In Southeast Asian countries turkey tail (Trametes versicolor) had been used to make decoctions for various health issues since 2nd century BC. If you want to make a tea of it, make sure that your ID is correct, also, be aware that it should be cooked for at least 30 minutes. Please don’t forget, if you have any health issues, consult to a qualified health professional before start self medicating! 


8 comments for Turkey Tail

  1. peter torode says:

    Hi do you know of any courses around the Anglesey area

    1. Eric Biggane says:

      Hi Peter, we are hoping to run courses near Dolgellau and Betws-y-Coed next year so hopefully that’s not too far away from you.


        Does anyone know where I can source some quality (pure as possible) Turkey Tail Mushroom suppliments in or around NE Hertfordshire?

        1. Attila Fodi says:

          Hi Garry,
          As a company, we don’t have any preferred supplier, but personally I always go with the MycoNutri products, such as: https://myconutri.com/products-2/coriolus.html

  2. Kieran says:

    hi I am looking to take turkey tail mushroom for my health and partner also can you tell me is there any side effects are they just like takeing vitamins and what is best to take power are tablet thank you so much..

    1. Attila Fodi says:

      If you have any health conditions that requires consuming turkey tail (Trametes versicolor) talk to a qualified nutritional therapist or a doctor. Turkey tail is an (otherwise) inedible mushroom, and it is consumed traditionally in Southeast Asian countries as decoction. I would prefer standardized extracts over home made remedies especially because there are 5-6 inedible, but not toxic lookalikes of turkey tail in the UK.

  3. Kelly says:

    Interested in foraging courses in Cambridgeshire.

    Kind regards

    1. Eric Biggane says:

      We run courses in Huntington and Thetford Forest around the Cambridge area. See below for details,



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