Trametes versicolor – also known as Coriolus versicolor and Polyporus versicolor – is a common polypore mushroom found throughout the world.
Meaning ‘of several colors’, versicolor reliably describes this fungus that displays a variety of colors. For example, because its shape and multiple colors are similar to those of a wild turkey, T. versicolor is commonly called turkey tail.
Found on a rotting Hemlock stump, Fillmore Glen State Park Moravia, Cayuga County, New York.
Polypores are a group of fungi that form large fruiting bodies with pores or tubes on the underside (see Delimitation for exceptions). They are a morphological group of basidiomycetes-like gilled mushrooms and hydnoid fungi, and not all polypores are closely related to each other.
Polypores are also called bracket fungi or shelf fungi, and they characteristically produce woody, shelf- or bracket-shaped or occasionally circular fruiting bodies that are called conks.
Most polypores inhabit tree trunks or branches consuming the wood, but some soil-inhabiting species form mycorrhiza with trees. Polypores and the related corticioid fungi are the most important agents of wood decay, playing a very significant role in nutrient cycling and aiding carbon dioxide absorption by forest ecosystems.
Reference: “Trametes versicolor” on Wikipedia