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Title: Morphological and functional diversity of ectomycorrhizal fungi on Roan Mountain (NC/TN)

Author: Bird, Claire; McCleneghan, Coleman;

Date: 2005

Source: Southeastern Naturalist. 4(1): 121-132

Publication Series: Miscellaneous Publication

Description: A comparison of ectomycorrhizal morphotypes and hypogeous fungi (truffles and false-truffles) in northern hardwood and spruce-fir forests on Roan Mountain (NC/TN) was performed to increase our knowledge of the fungal communities in the Southern Appalachian high elevation forests. These forests are home to an endangered subspecies and mycophagist, the Carolina northern flying squirrel (Glaucomys sabrinus coloratus), as well as the popular Christmas tree species and ectomycorrhizal host, Fraser fir (Abies fraseri). Ectomycorrhizal root tips were collected with soil cores and separated into morphotypes for quantification. Fruiting bodies of hypogeous fungi were sampled with a stratified random design, using exclosures to minimize mycophagy. Elaphomyces muricatus was the most commonly found hypogeous fruiting body, and Cenococcum geophilum the most commonly found ectomycorrhiza, in both forest types. Elaphomyces muricatus was most strongly associated with A. fraseri. There were more ectomycorrhizal morphotypes in the spruce-fir forest than in the northern hardwood forest. Functional groups of ectomycorrhizas were classified by exploration type. Historical land use on Roan Mountain is discussed in conjunction with the patterns found in this study, along with future concerns of the fragile Southern Appalachian spruce-fir ecosystem.

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Bird, Claire; McCleneghan, Coleman 2005. Morphological and functional diversity of ectomycorrhizal fungi on Roan Mountain (NC/TN). Southeastern Naturalist. 4(1): 121-132


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