Day 5 of the hunt for the Inonotus obliquus fruiting body.
Grafton MA

Found a snag of a Yellow Birch which still had some small Chaga attached.  This snag had lost all branches and looked like the tree died several years earlier.  I noticed several places where the bark was split and curled back.  I removed one piece about a square foot in size and saw a whitish gray surface that definitely showed the end of tubes, pointing down to the ground.

At the upper right is a small Chaga.  Down from that you see a tear in bark about 2.5" wide where the bark on either side pulled away from the tree.  I removed the bark below that, to expose the fruiting body. The gray stuff is it.

Here is a closer view of that surface.  You can see the openings of the ends of tubes that are pointing down to the ground.

Here is even a closer view.

Another close-up view, near the bark of the tree that is still attached.

Still another close-up.

I believe this to be the true fruiting body of Inonotus obliquus.  Being whitish in color, it should be a relatively young and a living fruiting body, as described in the Lincoff's mushroom guide.  I am trying to get some spores to study.  I hope to find more of these since now I know what to look for.

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