Coprinopsis lagopus fungus look vastly different in their immature and mature forms. The immature fruiting body resembles a small furry paw, hence the name hare’s foot inkcap. As the fungus matures, the caps shrink so that the rim turns up to form a shallow, black-ribbed, translucent bowl. Within a day these fruiting bodies melt into black ink – the process of deliquescence.
This fungus is of similar diameter to a £1 coin so we were lucky to see it lurking beside the track in the leaf litter under the broken beech.