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Effects of Elevation, Slope Position and Livestock Exclusion on Microfungi Isolated from Soils of Mediterranean Grasslands

Oriana Maggi, Anna M. Persiani, Miguel A. Casado and Francisco D. Pineda
Mycologia
Vol. 97, No. 5 (Sep. - Oct., 2005), pp. 984-995
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/3762278
Page Count: 12
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Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.
Effects of Elevation, Slope Position and Livestock Exclusion on Microfungi Isolated from Soils of Mediterranean Grasslands
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Abstract

The fungal communities of grassland soils in Spain from four sites at different elevations were studied. Each site contained grazed and fenced ungrazed plots. These plots were situated in two slope positions (upper and lower zones). The ungrazed plots, fenced off 6 y before the sampling, were part of a study of global change that simulates conditions of rural abandonment, which is widespread in Iberian countries, since Spain joined the European Union. We analyzed the structure of the soil fungi communities and its relationship with herbaceous vegetation. The distribution of 207 taxa of fungi revealed that the elevation was the main factor of fungal variability; the effect of grazing and slope position were associated with less variability. Although a halt in grazing resulted in the accumulation of standing plants and plant litter in these ecosystems, it had relatively little effect on soil microfungi and appeared to be related mainly to growing conditions affected by that accumulation.

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