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Abstract Detail

MSA - Ecology/Pathology

Lilleskov, Erik A [1], van Diepen, Linda T A [2], Andrew, Carrie J [2].

How quickly do soil fungi breathe? Estimating respiration of soil fungi in situ and in the lab.

Fungi are one of the key mediators of terrestrial carbon cycling via their role as root symbionts, saprotrophs and pathogens. Forest ecosystems are large storage pools of carbon, with the largest component of that carbon stored in the soil. Whether carbon is accumulated or lost in ecosystems is determined by the balance between gross photosynthesis and ecosystem respiration. Soil respiration is a major component of ecosystem respiration, but the relative contribution of roots, mycorrhizal fungi and free-living heterotrophs to soil respiration is poorly understood. Given the relative abundance of fungi in most mid- to higher-latitude soils, we expect fungal respiration to be an important component of soil respiration. Fungal respiration is carried out by both mycorrhizal and non-mycorrhizal fungi. We have been working to get a better estimate of the fungal contribution to soil respiration, and of the mycorrhizal component of that respiration. We have measured respiration of fungal sporocarps as well as arbuscular mycorrhizal and ectomycorrhizal fungal mycelia in the field and in the laboratory. Our various approaches are converging on relatively similar estimates. However, literature estimates of fungal respiration vary over many orders of magnitude. We try here to resolve these discrepancies to provide more robust estimates of fungal respiration for use in ecosystem modeling.

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1 - USDA Forest Service, Northern Research Station, Forestry Sciences Laboratory, 410 MacInnes Dr. , Houghton, MI, 49931, USA
2 - Michigan Technological University, School of Forest Resources and Environmental Science, 1400 Townsend Dr., Houghton, MI, 49931, USA

carbon cycle
ecosystem modeling

Presentation Type: Oral Paper:Papers for Topics
Session: 54
Location: Cottonwood B/Snowbird Center
Date: Tuesday, July 28th, 2009
Time: 4:15 PM
Number: 54003
Abstract ID:706