Higher marine fungi from mangroves (Manglicolous fungi)
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The mangrove ecosystem is a typical tropical and coastal vegetation, found in intertidal regions of river deltas and backwater areas known for high organic matter production, which supports the nearby estuarine and offshore community by detritus transport. Fungi play an important role in the decomposition of organic matter in the mangrove ecosystem. Mangrove trees have certain adaptations like prop roots, pneumatophores, knee roots and viviparous germination which facilitate their growth in the aquatic environment. The dead and damaged stems, prop roots, seedlings and leaves of the mangroves which fall on the ground are exposed during low tide and submerged in the water during high tide. The period of exposure depends on the tidal amplitude and place where the materials accumulate. This environment creates a unique habitat for a certain group of fungi called 'manglicolous fungi' which are well adapted to this type of environment. First review on manglicolous fungi recognised 42 species of higher marine fungi which included 23 Ascomycetes, 2 Basidiomycetes and 17 Deuteromycetes (Kohlmeyer and Kohlmeyer, 1979). Hyde (1990a) listed 120 species from 29 mangroves from all over the World this includes 87 Ascomycetes, 2 Basidiomycetes and 31 Deuteromycetes. Later on, the following species were published : Helicascus nypae, Salsuginea ralnicola, Phomopsis Magrovei, Magrovispora pemphii Hyde et Nakagiri, Massarina lacertensis Kohlm. et Volkm-Kohlm., Bnthyascus nzangroztei Ravikumar et Vittal, and Pedunzispora mangrovei Hyde et Jones. There are still more species awaiting description.
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