Oct 22, 2013

Effects of fungal inocula and habitat conditions on alder and eucalyptus leaf litter decomposition in streams of northern Spain

Microbial Ecology
Javier PérezJesús Pozo

Abstract

We investigated how fungal decomposer (aquatic hyphomycetes) communities colonizing alder and eucalyptus leaf litter respond to changes in habitat characteristics (transplantation experiment). We examined the breakdown of leaf materials and the associated fungal communities at two contrasting sites, a headwater stream (H) and a midreach (M). Agroforestry increased from headwater to midreach. One month after the start of experiments at both sites, some leaf samples from the midreach site were transplanted to the headwater site (M-H treatment). Although both sites showed similar dissolved inorganic nutrient concentrations, eucalyptus leaves initially incubated at the midreach site (M, M-H) increased their breakdown rate compared to those incubated along the experiment at the headwater site (H). Alder breakdown rate was not enhanced, suggesting that their consumption was not limited by nutrient availability. Sporulation rates clearly differed between leaf types (alder > eucalyptus) and streams (H > M), but no transplantation effect was detected. When comparing conidial assemblages after transplantation, an inoculum effect (persistence of early colonizing species) was clear in both leaf species. Substrate preference and shifts in t...Continue Reading

Mentioned in this Paper

Sporulation
Conidia
Allergy Testing Alder
Eucalyptus
Streams
Contrast Used
Biodiversity
Fungi
Hyphomycetes
Transplantation Aspects

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