Polypores are a group of fungi that form large fruiting bodies with pores or tubes on the underside. They are a morphological group of basidiomycetes-like gilled mushrooms and hydnoid fungi, not all polypores are related to each other. Polypores are called bracket fungi, their woody fruiting bodies are called conks. Most polypores inhabit tree trunks or branches consuming the wood, but some soil-inhabiting species form mycorrhiza with trees. Polypores and their relatives corticioid. Thus, they play a significant role in nutrient cycling and carbon dioxide production of forest ecosystems. Over one thousand polypore species have been described to science, but a large part of the diversity is still unknown in well-studied temperate areas. Polypores are much more diverse in old natural forests with abundant dead wood than in younger managed forests or plantations. A number of species have declined drastically and are under threat of extinction due to logging and deforestation. Polypores are used in traditional medicine, they are studied for their medicinal value and various industrial applications.

Several polypore species are serious pathogens of plantation trees and are major causes of timber spoilage. Bracket fungi, or shelf fungi, are among the many groups of fungi that compose the division Basidiomycota. Characteristically, they produce shelf- or bracket-shaped or circular fruiting bodies called conks that lie in a close planar grouping of separate or interconnected horizontal rows. Brackets can range from only a single row of a few caps, to dozens of rows of caps that can weigh several hundred pounds, they are found on trees and coarse woody debris, may resemble mushrooms. Some grow larger year after year. Bracket fungi are tough and sturdy and produce their spores, called basidiospores, within the pores that make up the undersurface; because bracket fungi are defined by their growth form rather than phylogeny, the group contains members of multiple clades. Although the term classically was reserved for polypores, molecular studies have revealed some odd relationships; the beefsteak fungus, a well-known bracket fungus, is a member of the agarics.

Other examples of bracket fungi include the sulphur shelf, birch bracket, dryad's saddle, artist's conk, turkey tail. The name polypores is used for a group that includes many of the hard or leathery fungi, which lack a stipe, growing straight out of wood. "Polypore" is derived from the Greek words poly, meaning "much" or "many", poros, meaning "pore". The group includes many different shapes and forms that are common in the tropical forests, including the hard'cup fungi' and the'shell','plate' and'bracket' fungus found growing off logs and still standing dead trees; the fungal individual that develops the fruit bodies that are identified as polypores resides in soil or wood as mycelium. Polypores are restricted to either deciduous or conifer host trees; some species depend on a single tree genus. Forms of polypore fruit bodies range from mushroom-shaped to thin effused patches that develop on dead wood. Perennial fruit bodies of some species growing on living trees can grow over 80 years old.

Most species of polypores develop new, short-lived fruit bodies annually or several times every year. Abundant fruit takes place during the rainy season. Structure of the fruit bodies is simple. Effused or resupinate fruit bodies consist of two layers - a tube layer of vertically arranged tubes that open downwards, supporting layer called subiculum that supports and attached the tubes to substrate. In fruit bodies with a cap the tissue between upper surface and the pore layer is called context. A few polypores have a core between context and substrate. A minority of polypores have a stalk that attach to the cap either laterally or centrally depending on the species. Polypore tubes are a honeycomb-like structure, their sides are covered with the hymenium. The tubes offer shelter for developing spores and help to increase the area of the spore-producing surface. Pore size and shape vary a lot between species, but little within a species – some Hexagonia spp. have 5 mm wide pores whereas pores of Antrodiella spp. are invisible to naked eye with 15 pores per mm.

The larger the pores, the larger the spores. A few polypores produce asexual spores in the upper surface of their cap or without the presence of a sexual fruit body. Bracket fungi grow in semi-circular shapes, looking like trees or wood, they can be saprotrophic, or both. One of the more common genera, can grow large thick shelves that may contribute to the death of the tree, feed off the wood for years after, their hardiness means they are resilient and can live for quite a long time, with many species developing beautiful multi-coloured circles of colour that are annual growth rings. Polypores are among the most efficient decomposers of lignin and cellulose, the main components of wood. Due to this ability they dominate communities of wood-rotting organisms in land ecosystems along with corticioid fungi. Through decomposing tree trunks they recycle a major part of nutrients

Rafael Arráiz Lucca

Rafael Arráiz Lucca is a Venezuelan essayist, poet and professor. Arraiz Lucca is professor in the Metropolitan University of Caracas. Since 2001, has been in charge of the "Fundación Para la Cultura Urbana", in Caracas. Became a lawyer in 1983 at the Andrés Bello Catholic University, specialist in integrated communications in 2002, in 2005 finished a mastership in History at the UCAB. Has written many poem books including: Balizaje, Almacén, Pesadumbre en Bridgetown, Poemas Ingleses, Reverón 25 poemas and Plexo Solar. Has been the writer of some works of literature and history such as Venezuela: 1830 a nuestros días, in 2007, Literatura Venezolana del Siglo XX, in 2009, has contributed with some essay books: Venezuela en cuatro asaltos, Trece lecturas venezolanas, Vueltas a la patria, Los oficios de la luz, El recuerdo de Venecia y otros ensayos, El coro de las voces solitarias, una historia de la poesía venezolana and ¿Que es la globalizacion?. Weekly writer at Venezuelan daily El Nacional since 1983.

During the 1990s, Arráiz Lucca was director of the National Council of Culture and president of the state-owned publishing Monte Ávila Editores Latinoamericana. Being a prolific poet and essayist, he took part in the Calicanto workshop ran by fellow writer Antonia Palacios; this experience led to an urban proposal that took shape in the form of a speech which focused on the 80s. Venezuela Venezuelan literature List of Venezuelan writers Review about Arráiz Lucca´s career at the XIX Medellín International Festival of Poetry website

Carlos Alberto Raffo

Carlos Alberto Raffo was an Argentine football striker who played international football for Ecuador. He had health conditions and died at a Hospital in Guayaquil, Ecuador at age of 87. Born in Buenos Aires, Raffo started his playing career with Club Atlético Platense in Argentina. In 1952 he moved to Ecuador to play for Argentina de Quito. In 1954 he joined Emelec where he would play many seasons. In his years he played for Everest and 9 de Octubre. Raffo is considered to be one of the greatest goalscorers in the history of the Ecuadorian football, but the precise number of goals he scored will never be known, due to poor record keeping in the early 1950s. Raffo played international football for Ecuador between 1959 and 1963, he scored 10 goals in 13 games for his adoptive country, he was the top scorer in the Copa América in 1963. He is the only Ecuador player to achieve this feat to date. Topscorer in Copa América in 1963: 6 goals Topscorer in Campeonato Ecuatoriano 1963