Aquatic Basidiomycetes And Their Taxonomic Relationship

Aquatic Basidiomycota are a minority group when compared with the as-comycetes, anamorphic fungi and Chromista (Table 2). Taxonomically they are unrelated, belonging to such diverse groups as the Agaricomycotina, Uredino-myctoina and Ustilaginomycotina (Table 1). Filamentous Agaricomycotina are represented by the orders Agaricales, Atheliales, Cantharellales, Polyporales, Russulales and Tremellales. Basidiomycete yeasts are found in four lineages in the Uredinomycotina (Agaricostilbomycetes, Microbotryomycetes, Naohidea clade, Urediniomycetes), and the Ustilaginomycotina (Scorzetti et al., 2002; Kurtzman and Fell, 2006).

Although only 11 marine filamentous basidiomycetes are documented, others occur on terrestrial mangrove timbers: 26 species (Chalermpongse, 1991; Schmidt and Shearer, 2003). At the time of writing we had collected 12 basidiomycetes on the intertidal bases of the palm Nypa fruticans, for example Grammothele fuligo

Table 2 Numbers of freshwater and marine fungi

Taxonomic group

Freshwater

Marine

Basidiomycota

29

20+

Ascomycota

650

439

Anamorphic fungi

660

72

Total

1,337

530

Source: After Hyde et al. (2000) and Tsui and Hyde (2003).

Source: After Hyde et al. (2000) and Tsui and Hyde (2003).

Figure 1 Grammothele fuligo growing on the decayed frond base, in ground contact, of the mangrove palm Nypa fruitcans.

(Figure 1). Mangrove trees of Xylocarpus granatum at Khanom National Park, south Thailand, were infected with butt rot with Phellinus species the possible causative agents (Figure 2). Agarics have also been found on mangrove soils, especially Coprinus, Cortinarius and Mycena species; they are short lived, fruit during the intertidal period and shed their spores before the tide returns (Jones, personal observation). These basidiomycetes have received little attention to date and further investigation for their adaptation to semi-aquatic habitats is warranted.

Figure 2 Butt rot of the mangrove tree Xylocarpus granatum at Hat Khanom-Mu Ko Thale Tai National Park, Thailand caused by Phellinus species.
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