Diversity of fungi from marine inundated wood from the Bay of Fundy, Nova Scotia, Canada
LE3 .A278 2020
Master of Science
Marine fungi play an integral role in the decomposition of intertidal organic substrates but remain poorly studied in cold-water habitats. Some fungi are obligately marine; in contrast, facultative marine fungi occupy terrestrial or freshwater habitats but can survive in saltwater habitats. The biodiversity of Nova Scotian marine fungi remains under studied. Through the focus on a specific substrate, marine inundated wood located in the intertidal zone, a consistent sampling effort was carried out during our study, which is the first of its kind in the Bay of Fundy region. The fungi associated with marine inundated wood including intertidal attached and -loose wood, and driftwood (ie. wharf posts, driftwood) found at 30 sites along the Bay of Fundy coastline were cultured and identified. Marine wood samples were collected and plated onto Artificial Saltwater Agar containing antibiotics. 299 fungi were isolated into axenic culture and 224 of the cultures were successfully identified using ITS rDNA barcoding. 91 unique species of fungi were identified, 63 of which are new records for the Bay of Fundy, 20 species are potentially new to science, and 43 of which are the first record for the species being isolated from the marine environment. These fungal species represent 9 obligate marine fungi, with the remaining species being facultative marine fungi. Seven species of soft rot fungi, capable of decaying woody material in wet and cold environments, were observed. A comprehensive inventory and culture collection of fungi reported from the Bay of Fundy was developed and β diversity was calculated. Historical records, as well as, roles of wood type, collection location within the Bay of Fundy, and media type are discussed. Herein, I provide the first annotated checklist of fungi isolated from marine wood from the Bay of Fundy, Nova Scotia.
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