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This is one of the most common and widespread of the Jelly Fungi. It fruits on debarked wood and is tough and gelatinous so it persists for a long time. In dry weather it shrivels to a hard horny mass but revives when wetted. Fruitbodies are 2-12 mm tall, slender, unbranched or sparingly branched, tough, gelatinous, dull yellow, and often with browning tips.
In Calocera viscosa, the Yellow Staghorn Fungus, fruitbodies are also tough and gelatinous but they are yellow to orange-yellow, coral-like, 3-8 cm tall, with open branching and short pointed laterals (staghorn). This latter species fruits on dead conifer logs and stumps, or sometimes from the ground from well-rotted wood.
Both species are distinguished macroscopically from a coral fungus by the tough, gelatinous texture and microsocpically by their septate basidia.