Spatiotemporal distribution of soil microfungi in “evolution canyon”, lower nahal oren, mount carmel, israel

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In the present study, quantitative and qualitative micromycete characteristics, suchas number of colony-forming units (CFU), species composition, species richness, diversity level, and dominant groups of species, were examined both in space andover time on the slopes and valley bottom of the “Evolution Canyon” (EC) micrositeat Lower Nahal Oren, Mt. Carmel, Israel. A total of 166 micromycete speciesbelonging to Deuteromycotina (142), Ascomycotina (9), and Zygomycotina (15)were isolated. More species were found on the south-facing slope (SFS) than on thenorth-facing slope (NFS) and the valley bottom (VB); the SFS fungal communitywas also characterized by a higher level of diversity (Shannon index, evenness). Thegreatest intra- and interslope differences were found comparing sunny open nicheswith shady niches under trees on the SFS: the dominance of Fusarium species andfrequent occurrence of dark-colored micromycetes characterized sunny soils; Penicillium species dominated the micromycete community in shady soils (as well as insoils of NFS). Micromycete quantity showed great spatiotemporal variations, from10,700 to 281,000 CFU per gram dry soil. The most pronounced differences wereobserved on SFS and in the VB in autumn, between sunny and shady niches (4–10-fold difference). The results demonstrated a clear effect of edaphic and climaticconditions both on the spatial distribution of micromycete quantity and on themicromycete species composition.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)297-308
Number of pages12
JournalIsrael Journal of Plant Sciences
Issue number4
StatePublished - 2000

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Agronomy and Crop Science
  • Plant Science


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