The role of small mammals as dispersers of mycorrhizal fungal spores within variously managed forests and clearcuts Public Deposited

http://ir.library.oregonstate.edu/concern/graduate_thesis_or_dissertations/v405sf862

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  • Small-mammal community composition, microhabitat selection, and dispersal of mycorrhizal fungal spores were studied in southwestern Oregon. Sampled habitats exhibited structural variation resulting from silvicultural practices. In 1981, the effect of clearcut treatment on these phenomena was evaluated. In 1982, the effect of forest structure was studied. Discriminant function analysis (DFA) and principal component analysis (PCA) were used to distinguish and characterize clearcut, edge, and forest habitats of study sites. Microhabitat preferences of small-mammal species were examined using DFA. For each habitat in every site, species diversities and related community parameters were calculated. Relationships among habitat structure, microhabitat preferences, and community composition parameters were examined using partial correlation analysis. Distances moved by small mammals between the clearcuts and forests were determined for common species. Spore abundances in fecal pellets were calculated for small-mammal species that moved among the three habitats. In 1981, 1273 individuals of 11 species were captured. Deer mice (Peromyscus maniculatus) and chipmunks (Tamias spp.) comprised 81.6 percent of all trapped animals. As degree of forest structure increased, the relative abundances of deer mice decreased and those of chipmunks and red-backed voles increased. Thus, small-mammal community composition changed with increasing habitat complexity. Only deer mice and chipmunks moved among all habitats, and no consistent effect of clearcut treatment was observed on movements of either species. Chipmunks excreted more kinds and greater quantities of fungal spores than deer mice. In 1982, 1287 individuals of seven small-mammal species were captured; golden-mantled ground squirrels (Spermophilus lateralis), deer mice, and yellow pine chipmunks (Tamias amoenus) were the most numerous. Relative abundances of small-mammal species varied with overall habitat complexity. As degree of forest structure increased, the relative proportions of forest specialists influenced small-mammal community composition. Ground squirrels, deer mice, and chipmunks moved among the three habitats. Differences in movements between habitats among these species reflected habitat affinities. Abundance of spores in feces was highest for Siskiyou chipmunks (Tamias siskiyou) followed by ground squirrels, deer mice, and yellow pine chipmunks. For all small-mammal species combined, the greatest spore abundance was recorded for samples from the least disturbed forest. Small-mammal and fungal communities respond to habitat alteration. Principal small-mammal mycophagists and fungi occur in greater numbers in minimally disturbed forests and untreated clearcuts. To maximize inocula availability in disturbed sites, adjacent forests and the understory in clearcuts should be left undisturbed.
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  • description.provenance : Approved for entry into archive by Deborah Campbell(deborah.campbell@oregonstate.edu) on 2013-07-10T17:17:28Z (GMT) No. of bitstreams: 1 McIntirePatrickW1985.pdf: 1238096 bytes, checksum: 0aff1009cfcdcd611ba0b63843562ead (MD5)
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