Small-mammal mycophagy in rangelands of central and southeastern Oregon
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CitationMaser, C., Maser, Z., & Molina, R. (1988). Small-mammal mycophagy in rangelands of central and southeastern Oregon. Journal of Range Management, 41(4), 309-312.
PublisherSociety for Range Management
JournalJournal of Range Management
AbstractMost arid and semiarid rangeland plants form a mycorrhizal symbiosis with certain fungi through which the host plants absorb water and nutrients from the soil. Small mammals are known to disperse viable spores of hypogeous, mycorrhizal fungi in forests, but little is known about small mammals as vectors of fungal spores in rangelands. We therefore examined the stomach contents of 575 mammals (16 genera, 26 species) for fungal spores. Spores of hypogeous, mycorrhizal fungi, representing 15 genera, were identified from 21% of the mammals. Although wind and water are thought to be the main means of dispersal for fungal spores in rangelands, a variety of mammals may be locally important in dispersing spores of mycorrhizal fungi.