Species of fungi which produce conspicuous sporocarps are a major component of forest ecosystems. They are essential to ecosystem function in a number of ways and are the source of a multimillion dollar commercial industry. Many are mycorrhizal and form long-lived symbioses with the roots of plants. In this role, the fungus provides the host plant with critical soil nutrients and can increase drought tolerance as well as enhance protection against pathogens. Saprobic fungi are essential to decomposition and nutrient cycling, and pathogenic fungi affect plant health and forest stand structure. Mushrooms and truffles are also an important food source for wildlife. In spite of their economic importance and critical ecosystem functions, relatively little is known about fungal community structure, biodiversity, natural history, and rarity of species. In order to identify rare species, long-term monitoring must be conducted...
Hunt, G.A.. 1999. Assessing Macrofungi of Special Concern for Conservation in Forested Ecosystems (in Proc. Conference Biology & Management of Species and Habitats at Risk). Ministry of Environment, Lands and Parks. Proceedings - Conference Biology & Management. Vol. 2
Topic: Species and Ecosystems at Risk
Keywords: fungi, forests, monitoring
Other Identifier: University College of the Cariboo
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