There are three major groups of fungi commonly encountered by the amateur mycologist: Ascomycetes, which include the cup-fungi, most of the lichens, yeasts and moulds; Basidomycetes which include the mushrooms, brackets, puffballs, rusts, smuts and jelly fungi, and Zygomycetes, which include the pin moulds and some of the dung fungi. The fourth group, the Chytridiomycota, are microscopic fungi found in soil, decaying vegetable matter or living with a plant or animal host either a parasite or saprophyte.The Myxomycota (slime moulds) and Oomycota (Phytophthora, Pythium, and downy mildews) were originally classified as fungi but are now included in the Protista. They have been included with the fungi on this website for convenience.
The current state of fungal taxonomy is best describes as fluid as DNA and RNA analysis is changing our perspective on the relationships between species. Therefore both species and genera are subject to relatively frequent name and organisational changes. There is not a comprehensive systematic list for the fungi recorded in the Outer Hebrides, but work is in progress and as records are verifie they will be added to the current list used on this site.