Investigation of growth responses in saprophytic fungi to charred biomass

Ascough, Philippa L., Sturrock, Craig J., and Bird, Michael I. (2010) Investigation of growth responses in saprophytic fungi to charred biomass. Isotopes in Environmental and Health Studies, 46 (1). pp. 64-77.

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Abstract

We present the results of a study testing the response of two saprophytic white-rot fungi species, Pleurotus pulmonarius and Coriolus versicolor, to charred biomass (charcoal) as a growth substrate. We used a combination of optical microscopy, scanning electron microscopy, elemental abundance measurements, and isotope ratio mass spectrometry (13C and 15N) to investigate fungal colonisation of control and incubated samples of Scots Pine (Pinus sylvestris) wood, and charcoal from the same species produced at 300 °C and 400 °C. Both species of fungi colonise the surface and interior of wood and charcoals over time periods of less than 70 days; however, distinctly different growth forms are evident between the exterior and interior of the charcoal substrate, with hyphal penetration concentrated along lines of structural weakness. Although the fungi were able to degrade and metabolise the pine wood, charcoal does not form a readily available source of fungal nutrients at least for these species under the conditions used in this study.

Item ID: 16846
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1477-2639
Keywords: biochar; carbon-13; charcoal; degradation; fungi; isotope ecology; nitrogen-15
Date Deposited: 15 May 2011 07:29
FoR Codes: 05 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES > 0503 Soil Sciences > 050301 Carbon Sequestration Science @ 100%
SEO Codes: 97 EXPANDING KNOWLEDGE > 970105 Expanding Knowledge in the Environmental Sciences @ 100%
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