Laetiporus gilbertsonii var. pallidus - the pale “Southern Chicken of the Woods” known from the Gulf Coast states. 🐔🍄 If you see something that resembles a "Chicken of the Woods" in Florida it is most likely this species.
This choice edible species is in genus Laetiporus - which contains mushrooms commonly referred to as some type of Chicken, due to their texture and flavor which are reminiscent of chicken meat.
They're soft-fleshed polypores you’ll find growing out of Oak trees here in Florida. The main distinguishing factors of this particular species are the shelf-like formation, association with Oak, pale salmon orange to rosy pink pileus (upper surface/cap), pale white to cream or light orange underside, and white flesh. It is parasitic and saprobic, which simply means that the fungus eats a tree while alive, then eats the tree while it is dead.
Common names get a thumbs down here 👎 as there is also a different edible species commonly referred to as "Hen of the Woods" (Grifola frondosa), which is in a completely different genus, and looks quite different. G. frondosa is not known from Florida but can be found in the Southeast and is fairly common in the Northeast. To avoid confusion, let’s do the scientific name 😇
All Hen’s aside, if you find the Laetiporus, and you want to eat the Laetiporus, be mindful with the Laetiporus. There are reports of sensitivities and mild allergic reactions with this particular species of Laetiporus in comparison to other species in the genus. As with all new mushrooms, start with a small amount to observe any potential sensitivities and so your body can adjust to a new foraged food. Happy hunting!