Airborne spores of Basidiomycetes in Mérida (SW Spain)
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Department of Plant Biology, Ecology and Earth Sciences, University of Extremadura, Badajoz, Spain
Environmental Biology and Public Health Department, University of Huelva, Huelva, Spain
Applied Physics Department, University of Extremadura, Badajoz, Spain
Corresponding author
Rafael Tormo Molina   

Department of Plant Biology, Ecology and Earth Sciences, University of Extremadura, Badajoz, Spain
Ann Agric Environ Med. 2013;20(4):657-663
The aim of this work was to detect the presence of Basidiomycetes spores (basidiospores, teliospores, uredospores and aeciospores) in Mérida (SW Spain) and assess the influence of weather parameters. Air was sampled continuously with a volumetric seven-day Burkard spore trap for two years. Fungi spores were identified and counted at x1,000 microscope resolution. Daily and weekly meteorological data and airborne spore concentration were analysed. Twenty-three spores types were identified, including basidiospores (Amanita, Agrocybe, Cortinarius, Coprinus -2 types-, Boletus, Bovista, Calvatia, Entoloma, Ganoderma, Inocybe, Russula, Scleroderma, Telephora), teliospores (Phragmidium, Tilletia, Ustillago -4 types-), uredospores, and aeciospores (2 types), all of these types of spores included different taxa. Average concentration was of 616 spores/m3, with maximum concentration in autumn (October), and a second concentration in spring (May-June); however, some spore types were more frequent in summer (Bovista, Ganoderma) or even in winter (Entoloma, Calvatia). The Amanita type was the most frequent (white-hyaline basidiospores); the second were teliospores of Ustilago, the third spore type was basidiospores of Coprinus (blackish basidiospores) and Agrocybe type (smoothed light to dark coloured basidiospores). Basidiospore concentration was positively correlated with temperature and negatively with relative humidity in most cases, and Ustilago teliospores concentration was positively correlated with wind speed. Differences in monthly rain were probably the origin between years. Airborne spores of Basidiomycetes may be separated into more than 20 types, and their seasonal concentration depended on meteorology as well as whether they were saprotrophic or parasitic.
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