A simple method to assess macrofungal sporocarp biomass for investigating ecological change

BB Tóth, A Feest

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

17 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The methodologies used for studying macrofungal communities are an eclectic assemblage of many different and unstandardized approaches. In this study we propose a simple, nondestructive but still informative method to assess fungal sporocarp biomass in forested areas. We use the number of fruiting bodies found in the surveyed plot, and data on cap diameter of the species from the literature to calculate a cap area index. We show that this index very strongly correlates with the measured total dry mass of the species obtained from the same plot. We point out that the cap area index provides a more accurate estimation of the epigeous fungal sporocarp biomass than do the species sporocarp numbers. This new methodology allows the spatiotemporal distribution of a fungal community in an ecosystem to be followed. Since sporocarp production responds much more sensitively to environmental changes than does the fine-root vegetative ectomycorrhizal community, it may more quickly reflect whether an ecosystem has been perturbed. It will also allow us to collect data on saprotrophic species. A sporocarp survey can be useful for detecting early changes in the habitat and environment, and give an easily applicable method for conservation biology and ecosystem management.
Translated title of the contributionA simple method to assess macrofungal sporocarp biomass for investigating ecological change
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)652 - 658
Number of pages7
JournalCanadian Journal of Botany
Volume85 (7)
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2007

Bibliographical note

Publisher: National Research Council of Canada

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