NUÑEZ OTAÑO Noelia Betiana
congresos y reuniones científicas
Age is not a problem: using modern fungal taxonomy to increase accuracy of deep-time paleoecological interactions
Workshop; International workshop on phytoliths and non-pollen palynomorphs; 2019
Institución organizadora:
Institu de ciencies de la Terra Jaume Almera
Mycopalynology is an increasingly important branch of paleopalynology. While the utility of fungi as ecological indicators has been known for nearly 100 years, it is only in the last thirty years that fungi have been widely embraced by paleoecologists, in part because of the difficulty in classifying fungal taxa, especially when working in rocks and sediments older than the Pleistocene. Identification and naming of fossil fungi are not easy tasks. The traditional school follows the scheme of naming all fungi as if they were extinct, i.e. with names ending in ?ites, etc. While useful for biostratigraphy, this method is not useful for paleoecology, especially if authors do not link fossil fungal remains named as form taxa to extant taxa. The most modern approach for naming fossil fungi and the one most in line with the Shenzhen Code is to follow the modern fungal taxonomic schemes. This is most readily accomplished through direct collaboration between paleoecologists well-versed in mycopalynology and modern mycologists specializing in fungal morphology. We present a re-study of four fossil fungal taxa (Desmidiosporites stellatus Elsik 1992 nomen nudum, Foveodiporites anklevarensis Varma & Rawat 1963, Parapotamomyces maydiformis O?Keefe 2017, and Pesavis tagluensis Elsik & Jansonius 1974) as an example of how important the collaborative work between mycologists and palynologists is. Desmidiosporites stellatus, rather than being a variant of entomopathogenic Desmidiospora, is most likely a member of Arthrinium, a genus that shows a notable range of lifestyles, from endophytes to pathogens to saprobes, usually isolated from dead and dying plants as well as organic debris in soil. Foveodiporites ankelvarensis is a member of the ascomycete genus Phialomyces. These are known from leaf-litter and forest soils. Parapotamomyces maydiformis is not allied to Potamomyces, as previously thought, rather, it is a member of the Botryosphaeriaceae, which are cosmopolitan parasites, saprophytes, and endophytes of woody plants. The enigmatic Pesavis tagluensis, rather than being an epiphyllous hyphomycete as previously suggested, is likely a member of the Kickxellales, which are part of the new class Kickxellomycetes. Members of this class are known weak non-haustorial mycoparasites on dung and soil, and also saprobes. P. tagluensis is most similar to the asexual reproductive structures of extant Kickxellales which are coprophilous on insect frass.