Tree identification is an excellent skill to learn if you are interested in foraging mushrooms. Many edible mushrooms grow in association with trees. When you learn the basics of tree identification, your understanding of fungal ecology improves.
One popular mushroom that grows in association with trees is chicken of the woods (genus Laetiporus). Despite its popularity, chicken of the woods sometimes has a questionable reputation. When this mushroom grows on certain trees (e.g., angiosperms), foragers praise it and consider it undeniably edible. When this mushroom grows on other trees (e.g., conifers), some foragers vilify it and consider it suspect.
I recently spent some time in a conifer-rich woodland and decided to film a video in which I share my thoughts on this controversy.
Is there any truth to the claim that conifer-derived chicken mushrooms are potentially toxic?