Conidial fungi associated with herbivore dung in Brazil
Melo, Roger Fagner Ribeiro; Miller, Andrew Nicholas; Costa Maia, Leonor
In order to increase the knowledge about coprophilous fungal diversity in tropical ecosystems, 270 samples of cattle, goat and horse dung were collected for 20 months throughout an edaphic and climatic gradient from the Atlantic Forest complex to the semi-arid Caatinga complex in Pernambuco, northeastern Brazil. A total of 142 occurrences of conidial ascomycetes was recorded with ~850 specimens analyzed, resulting in 33 identified taxa. Five taxa are recorded for the first time in Brazil. A common coprophilous anamorph, Graphium penicillioides, and a highly ubiquitous species, Aspergillus cf. terreus, were the two dominant species. The gradient between vegetation areas did not show significant differences in species diversity, composition or richness regarding conidial fungi on dung. When compared, the assemblages differed mainly between substrate type rather than collection area. Factors influencing the assemblage's diversity and composition, as well as species occurrence patterns were discussed. An identification key for these taxa is provided.