Presentation Abstract

Fungi distribution in the Elwha restoration ecosystem Colter Lemons, Mary Childress Huxley College of the Environment Western Washington University Bellingham, Washington USA Abstract Fungi play important roles in forest restoration, however, factors affecting fungal species composition and distribution are unknown for restoration associated with dam removal. The need for this information is pressing as the number of dams approaching the end of their useful lives grows rapidly. This study aimed to answer what environmental factors influence fungal distribution in the Elwha restoration ecosystem, the largest dam removal in history. Fungal distributions were sampled in two Elwha study areas: the largest former reservoir bed, and a comparable valley upriver from both dams and reservoirs. In each study area, a stratified random sample of fungal distributions and relative conditions of vegetation and substrate were conducted. Strata was defined by stage of forest development: recent sediment deposits, young forest, and mature forest. To analyze the data, models were fit for site factors to fungal distribution data using logistic regression, and we evaluated relative empirical support for each model using information theoretic methods. In doing this, it was found that the two most important environmental factors for fungi distribution are litter depth of available organic matter, and organic soil composition. These results can be used as an aid to forecast future fungal distributions as Elwha restoration proceeds, suggesting that as organic matter accumulates, fungal presence will increase. This study can help inform decisions about dam removal on other similar river basins. Planting rapidly growing deciduous species to produce leaf litter will increase organic soil composition and promote symbiotic networks of mycorrhizae, establishing vegetation and enhancing restoration outcomes at a more substantial rate.

Session Title

Track: Shorelines, Estuaries & Rivers – Posters

Conference Track

Shorelines, Estuaries & Rivers

Conference Name

Salish Sea Ecosystem Conference (2020 : Online)

Document Type

Event

SSEC Identifier

2020_abstractID_2325

Start Date

21-4-2020 9:00 AM

End Date

22-4-2020 4:45 PM

Geographic Coverage

Salish Sea (B.C. and Wash.)

Rights

Copying of this document in whole or in part is allowable only for scholarly purposes. It is understood, however, that any copying or publication of this document for commercial purposes, or for financial gain, shall not be allowed without the author's written permission.

Language

English

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Apr 21st, 9:00 AM Apr 22nd, 4:45 PM

Fungi distribution in the Elwha restoration ecosystem

Fungi distribution in the Elwha restoration ecosystem Colter Lemons, Mary Childress Huxley College of the Environment Western Washington University Bellingham, Washington USA Abstract Fungi play important roles in forest restoration, however, factors affecting fungal species composition and distribution are unknown for restoration associated with dam removal. The need for this information is pressing as the number of dams approaching the end of their useful lives grows rapidly. This study aimed to answer what environmental factors influence fungal distribution in the Elwha restoration ecosystem, the largest dam removal in history. Fungal distributions were sampled in two Elwha study areas: the largest former reservoir bed, and a comparable valley upriver from both dams and reservoirs. In each study area, a stratified random sample of fungal distributions and relative conditions of vegetation and substrate were conducted. Strata was defined by stage of forest development: recent sediment deposits, young forest, and mature forest. To analyze the data, models were fit for site factors to fungal distribution data using logistic regression, and we evaluated relative empirical support for each model using information theoretic methods. In doing this, it was found that the two most important environmental factors for fungi distribution are litter depth of available organic matter, and organic soil composition. These results can be used as an aid to forecast future fungal distributions as Elwha restoration proceeds, suggesting that as organic matter accumulates, fungal presence will increase. This study can help inform decisions about dam removal on other similar river basins. Planting rapidly growing deciduous species to produce leaf litter will increase organic soil composition and promote symbiotic networks of mycorrhizae, establishing vegetation and enhancing restoration outcomes at a more substantial rate.