Academic Field

Environmental and Earth Sciences, Study, Engineering

Faculty Mentor Name

Patricia Wright

Presentation Type

Poster Presentation

Abstract

Fungi are a vital part of most ecosystems. In general the habitat requirements of fungi are poorly known. With habitat degradation happening at an unprecedented rate worldwide, studying the patterns of fungi biodiversity is essential to ascertain what regions may be conservation priorities. The aim of this study was to evaluate potential differences in fungal diversity and abundance between primary and selectively logged rainforests in Ranomafana National Park, Madagascar. Sixteen 5 m x 5 m plots in each forest type were searched thoroughly for macrofungi and specimens were identified down to morphological group. The morphological group diversity (Shannon Index) and abundance of macrofungi were calculated for each plot. In total, 10 distinct morphological groups were found in Ranomafana. The primary forest had a significantly higher abundance of macrofungi (830) as compared to the forest selectively logged two decades previously. (462). However, this contrasts could be the result of differing weather conditions during sampling. There was no significant difference observed in macrofungi morphological group diversity between the primary and the disturbed forests and 9 of the 10 morphological groups were ubiquitous across both forests. While additional long term sampling is needed to more precisely assess the macrofungi biodiversity patterns of Ranomafana National Park, this research suggests that both the primary and selectively logged forest are viable habitat for macrofungi, and have the abiotic and biotic conditions necessary to support a high level of fungi diversity. Future research might include additional controlled experiments focusing on the causal and correlative factors influencing diversity of macrofungi in this rainforest ecosystem within Madagascar.

Keywords

macrofungi, alpha diversity, primary forest, secondary forest, morphological group

Start Date

10-4-2015 11:15 AM

End Date

10-4-2015 12:00 PM

Location

SERC House of Fields

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Apr 10th, 11:15 AM Apr 10th, 12:00 PM

Abundance and Diversity of Macrofungi in Ranomafana National Park, Madagascar.

SERC House of Fields

Fungi are a vital part of most ecosystems. In general the habitat requirements of fungi are poorly known. With habitat degradation happening at an unprecedented rate worldwide, studying the patterns of fungi biodiversity is essential to ascertain what regions may be conservation priorities. The aim of this study was to evaluate potential differences in fungal diversity and abundance between primary and selectively logged rainforests in Ranomafana National Park, Madagascar. Sixteen 5 m x 5 m plots in each forest type were searched thoroughly for macrofungi and specimens were identified down to morphological group. The morphological group diversity (Shannon Index) and abundance of macrofungi were calculated for each plot. In total, 10 distinct morphological groups were found in Ranomafana. The primary forest had a significantly higher abundance of macrofungi (830) as compared to the forest selectively logged two decades previously. (462). However, this contrasts could be the result of differing weather conditions during sampling. There was no significant difference observed in macrofungi morphological group diversity between the primary and the disturbed forests and 9 of the 10 morphological groups were ubiquitous across both forests. While additional long term sampling is needed to more precisely assess the macrofungi biodiversity patterns of Ranomafana National Park, this research suggests that both the primary and selectively logged forest are viable habitat for macrofungi, and have the abiotic and biotic conditions necessary to support a high level of fungi diversity. Future research might include additional controlled experiments focusing on the causal and correlative factors influencing diversity of macrofungi in this rainforest ecosystem within Madagascar.