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Abstract Detail

Mycological Section

Davey, Marie [1].

Biodiversity hotspots: are bryophytes an overlooked source of fungal diversity?

Bryophytes are a dominant component of many ecosystems, particularly in north temperate zones such as the boreal forest, where their coverage can approach one hundred percent. Bryophilous fungi are primarily ascomycetes, and encompass a taxonomically heterogenous assembly of pathogenic, parasitic, and saprophytic species. Reports of bryophilous fungi worldwide are largely limited to those few Pezizalean species that are of appreciable size, while the vast majority of species are typically overlooked due to their small size (<1mm, often 20-100 μm). A combined approach of metabarcoding and targeted fruitbody surveys in Norway has demonstrated that bryophytes are a rich and overlooked source of fungal biodiversity. Prior to the initiation of this study, only 25 species of bryophilous ascomycetes had previously been recorded in Norway, and these were primarily Pezizalean species. However, in metabarcoding surveys, as many as 90 fungal species were detected in association with a single moss shoot, and each bryophyte species was found to host a unique fungal community. Although metabarcoding surveys did not differentiate between casual phylloplane fungi, and more closely associated parasites, pathogens and saprophytes, targeted surveys for bryophilous ascomycete fruiting bodies doubled the number of species known for Norway, as well as extended the northern limits of the known ranges for an additional eight species within the country, confirming that bryophilous ascomycetes are poorly circumscribed in the country. In addition to three putative new species, a number of rare and novel collections were made. These include Fuscolachnum necator, which has only been reported from one other locality in the world, the first record of Durella polytrichina globally since the 1970’s, and the first report of the lichenized ascomycete Protothelenella polytrichi outside of the European Alps.

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1 - University of Oslo, Department of Biology , PO Box 1066 , Oslo, 0316, Norway

bryophilous fungi
Rare fungi

Presentation Type: Poster:Posters for Sections
Session: P
Location: Hall D/The Shaw Conference Centre
Date: Monday, July 27th, 2015
Time: 5:30 PM
Number: PMY019
Abstract ID:833
Candidate for Awards:None

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