Myxomycetes of the Taimyr Peninsula (north-central Siberia)

Authors: Novozhilov, Yuri & Schnittler, Martin & Stephenson, Steven L.
Journal: Karstenia, Volume 39 (1999), Issue 2, pages 77-97.
Full text: PDF
Key words: myxomycetes, biodiversity, ecology, Arctic, Russia, Taimyr Peninsula

Abstract:  Fifty-six species of myxomycetes representing 26 genera were identified from 371 collections that originated almost exclusively from 270 moist chamber cultures prepared with samples of decaying plant material collected on the Taimyr Peninsula (Russia, north-central Siberia) and in the adjacent Putorana Plateau. Species numbers decrease progressively from northern taiga and forest-tundra over southern tundra to the typical tundra subzone. Forty species in 18 genera were recorded in the northern taiga subzone, 40 species in 19 genera in forest-tundra, and 25 species in 17 genera in the tundra subzones. A taxonomic specificity or community endemism of myxomycete assemblages in tundra as compared to those of northern taiga communities was not found. In general, the myxomycete biota of the tundra zone of the Taimyr Peninsula can be considered as an impoverished biota of the northern taiga subzone. Ten ubiquitous species were recorded from at least one half of all studied localities. The average number of species per genus (2.1) calculated in our study indicates a rather low species diversity for high latitudes, contrary to the biotas of temperate and tropical zones where this ratio ranges from 2.2 to 4.6. Values for coefficient of community, calculated for all pairwise combinations of different study areas in the Arctic, ranged from 0.45 to 0.63, thus indicating fairly high levels of similarity among arctic and subarctic myxomycete biotas.