Original paper

Aquatic hyphomycetes and leaf decomposition in contaminated groundwater wells in Central Germany

Krauss, Gudrun; Sridhar, K.R. Bärlocher


Six heavy metal contaminated groundwater wells near abandoned copper shale mines of Mansfelder Land in Central Germany yielded 13 aquatic hyphomycete species (3–7 per site) on immersed Alnus glutinosa leaves. Anguillospora sp. 2, Cylindrocarpon sp. and Tetracladium marchalianum were the three top conidial producers. Mass loss rates and release of conidia were below those of leaves exposed in surface streams with similar or higher heavy metal loads, while ergosterol levels were comparable. In food choice experiments, Gammarus fossarum distinguished between leaves conditioned in the six wells. Consumption rates correlated with numbers of released conidia but not with ergosterol levels of the substrate.


aquatic hyphomycetesgroundwaterheavy metal pollutionleaf decompositionconditioning