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[APD] RE: fun guy

>Hey  gang,

>Been doing some reading, and I have a question-- Are
>Mycorrizal fungi a factor for plants in aquatic
>systems? If so, what types of environments favor them

>It seems that they're fairly critical for a lot of
>commercial crop/ornamental plants in non-artificial
>environments. Also, they are easily disturbed, and
>wouldn't necessarily be present in aquaria without
>some sort of inoculation-- Is this worth looking into?

>John Wheeler 

About 3 years I looked into this. 
Generally, the accepted notion at the time was that fungi-plant
associations are absent in wetlands. 
But more recently, they have found a number of fungal interactions
contributing to plant health/growth in aquatic macrophytes.

Still, much more research is needed, roughly half of the 25 or so species a
research group looked at had some evidence of this association which was
surprisingly high.
Fungi need a fair amount of O2, most wetland soils are characterized by
anaerobic conditions about 1mm to 1cm below the surface..
But plants also transport O2 into the rhizosphere so they can culture their
own conditions suitable for fungi. 
Also, at the aerobic-anaerobic interface, there is a lot of action going on
in wetland systems, but generally it's dominated by bacterial rather than
fungal processes.
These are non plant-fungal associated though.

Still I've seen some interesting research in the last few years on fungi's
role in cycling in wetland soils.

I found fungal associations with Bolbitus on cork in my own tanks, see old
APD post about 3-4 years ago.
Generally, the mulm I add from tank to tank will have a lot of fungal,
bacterial and critter spores/cyst, so inoculation is easy and common. 
I'm not sure how much of a role this plays in aquariums but there are ways
and methods now that can measure and quantify how important fungi's role
might be . 

I do know they are present around the roots of Bolbitus.
If I'd have to guess, the bacteria and redox value will play a larger role
in terms of plant health.
Tom Barr 

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