Plantlife has set up an online course. It’s free, anyone can join it, you can dip in and out of it whenever you like. It’s an excellent introduction to waxcaps , and does not assume any prior knowledge or expertise. Aspects of grassland management that favour flowering plant species-richness also favour waxcaps and other grassland specialist fungi. When all the floral interest in a meadow or other area of spp rich grassland has gone over in autumn and early winter, a whole other set of fascinating organisms living in the soil may well make their presence known by sending up fruiting bodies.
Plantife describes the course:
This self-guided, interactive course is aimed at anyone with an interest in learning about waxcap grassland fungi, how to identify them and best management practices.You might be confident in identifying other plants or animals, or a complete beginner to identification. You might have been on one of Plantlife’s face to face training days or online courses, or this may be your first time with us. You may be interested on a personal level or you might be learning skills to take with you into your work or volunteering.
The course aims to equip you with a better understanding of waxcaps, the skills you need to identify them, and guidance advice on management best practice. When you have completed the course, you will:
- Understand what waxcap grasslands are, their importance both locally and globally, and the threats that they face
- Feel confident about using identification guides and be familiar with some of the more commonly found grassland species as well as some rarities
- Have tools that you can use to assess the health of your own, or others’ waxcap grasslands
- Have a foundation of skills and knowledge that will help assess the importance of a waxcap grassland and can put management guidance into practice.
You can find the course here: https://www.plantlife.org.uk/online-courses/introduction-to-waxcap-grassland-fungi-identification-and-management/#/