Wood-inhabiting corticioid homo- and heterobasidiomycetes in Norway: new species and new distribution patterns revealed by fruitbody surveys and molecular screening

Our objective is to increase knowledge on diversity and distribution of corticioid fungi on spruce in Norway. We compare fruitbody-based and DNA-based diversity screening methods to evaluate the efficiency and accuracy of molecular screening.

A fruitbody of Piloderma fallax, a common mycorrhiza-forming corticioid species. It produces fruitbodies on well-decayed logs in old forests. Such logs are very species rich concerning other corticioid fungi. Photo: Karl-Henrik Larsson

The Norwegian mycobiota is partly relatively well known concerning basidiomycetes, but for species with inconspicuous fruitbodies on dead wood, the knowledge is still deficient. We focus on the diversity of wood-inhabiting corticioids, including heterobasidiomycetes, and analyze it from extensive fruitbody data from 600 logs at 10 localities across the distribution range of spruce in Norway. A similar survey (1080 logs at 18 sites) was conducted in Sweden, making it possible to study the variation in fungal species composition at a large spatial scale in Scandinavian natural-like spruce forests.

Each surveyed log was also drilled and the DNA in sawdust was pyrosequenced. We will hence be able to compare the communities revealed by fruitbody sampling and by molecular screening. We evaluate the efficiency and accuracy of fast DNA-based biodiversity screening and to what extent DNA-based methods can replace or complement traditional slow and expert-dependent methods.

Our large fruitbody dataset will considerably increase our knowledge about which species of corticioid homo- and heterobasidiomycetes occur on spruce in Norway and how they are distributed. Many species new to Norway will be found, especially among heterobasidiomycetes. Representative collections of all species will be deposited in the herbarium at NHM and DNA barcoding will be performed on species lacking representation in public databases. All data, including observations through DNA, will be made available through Artsobservasjoner.

Project manager: Jenni Nordén, Natural History Museum, University of Oslo

Project period: 2013-2014

Collaborators: Finnish Museum of Natural History and experts in Spain, Russia, Finland, USA, Sweden and Estonia.

Funding: Norwegian Biodiversity Information Centre

Published Feb. 13, 2013 3:59 PM - Last modified Sep. 25, 2015 3:00 PM