Other names for F.pinicola is Red-belted bracket or Red-banded polypore. Quite appropriate really as this hoof-shaped bracket has a reddish/rust extended rim around the margin. This bracket does resemble in shape and texture Fomes fomentarius but grows more steeply. It can reach a size of 30 cm. It is grooved and wrinkled. The Fungi of Britain and Europe book states that "it has a resinous covering which melts in heat" and this can be tested using a match! It smells strongly acidic and grows either in small groups or can be solitary. Usually found on broad-leaved trees or conifers. May be seen all year but this is a rare bracket.
If I have interpreted the FRDBI records correctly then it has only been recorded 40 times in the UK.
I was very kindly sent a photograph by DC taken in Gloucestershire and was the second recording in that county. This photograph can now be viewed on Browse 4 of fungiworld.co.uk
During May I came across my first ever sighting of a Willow bracket. Having never seen one before I was blessed with seeing on the same day, a young example and then later a mature example.
The young Willow bracket is very different in appearance to how it matures. Being hoof-like, and bracket-like, rusty brown, but when mature being grey with a cracked appearance. Mostly seen on willow but also sometimes on broad-leaved trees. This can also be seen on Browse 4.