Macrofungal diversity and community ecology in mature and regrowth wet eucalypt forest in Tasmania: A multivariate study
Packham, JM and May, TW and Brown, MJ and Wardlaw, TJ and Mills, AK, Macrofungal diversity and community ecology in mature and regrowth wet eucalypt forest in Tasmania: A multivariate study, Austral Ecology, 27, (2) pp. 149-161. ISSN 1442-9985 (2002) [Refereed Article]
The biodiversity of macrofungi in mature and young regrowth Tasmanian wet forests is described at the species level and at the community level. The macrofungal communities studied were much more species-rich than their vascular plant counterparts, with the total number of macrofungal taxa outnumbering vascular plants by four to one. This ratio applied in both mature and young regrowth forest sites. Some 242 taxa of macrofungi were recorded, of which 132 were identified to species level, the remainder to species groups or higher taxa. Distinct communities could be discerned from multivariate analysis (ordination and classification) of vascular plant and macrofungal data from the mature and regrowth sites. The two vascular plant communities had different fire histories, and this difference is also assumed to account for the separation of the macrofungal communities of the two forest types. There was generally a high level of congruence between the vascular plant and the macrofungal communities. However, one young regrowth site, which was relatively close to the mature sites in the ordination space for the analysis of vascular plants, was distant from the mature forest sites for the analysis of macrofungi. Another regrowth site, which had experienced wildfire rather than silvicultural regeneration, clustered with mature sites for some analyses of the macrofungal assemblage. Variation in the macrofungal communities was correlated with a different set of the measured environmental variables than was variation in the vascular plant communities. Mature and young regrowth forests were found to have distinctly different macrofungal floras, with approximately 40% of the taxa in each forest type being restricted to that type of site. Suitable indicator taxa (restricted or preferential to particular forest types) for use in further studies are suggested.