Micromycetes from the saline Arubotaim Cave: Mount Sedom, the dead sea southwestern shore, Israel

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We examined the soil microfungal community of the saline Arubotaim Cave, Israel. A total of 68 species from 28 genera were isolated. The most prominent features of the cave mycobiota were: the prevailing number of melanin-containing micromycetes; the abundant presence of the Aspergillus species; a comparatively large share of sexual ascomycetes; and the spatial and temporal variation of the mycobiota composition. Nine species were considered as a characteristic micromycete core for the cave. Many of the micromycetes isolated are distributed worldwide. This confirms the conclusion of many mycologists working in areas with saline and arid soils that there is no specific halophilous mycobiota characteristic for these soils.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)431-443
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Arid Environments
Issue number4
StatePublished - Jun 2004

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
We express our thanks to the Israeli Ministry of Absorption and the Ancell-Teicher Research Foundation for Genetics and Molecular Evolution for financial support of this research. We are very grateful to Dr. Tomas Pavlicek and Dr. Sophia Barinova for their kind help in sample collecting and temperature measuring.


  • Adaptive features
  • Micromycetes
  • Mycobiota
  • Saline cave
  • Species composition

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Ecology
  • Earth-Surface Processes


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