UBC Theses and Dissertations

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UBC Theses and Dissertations

Deriving a qualitative, continental scale model of species richngi in Caness for ectomycorrhizal funada and the United States of America Altwasser, Brittany


Understanding the processes that influence richness and diversity patterns across spatial and temporal scales is imperative to ecological research. Our knowledge of how these processes affect ecologically and economically important ectomycorrhizal fungal communities across scales is incomplete. Researchers have begun to explore ectomycorrhizal diversity at larger spatial scales, but have placed little consideration on complex processes and temporal scales. Here, I review the literature on ectomycorrhizal fungal diversity, using the framework of Vellend (2010) in an effort to identify the drivers of ectomycorrhizal fungal diversity, any inconsistencies in the literature, and knowledge gaps. In doing this I am able to hypothesize as to what additional factors might influence ectomycorrhizal diversity. By synthesizing these hypotheses with the predictors identified in the literature, I am able to produce a qualitative predictive model of EMF diversity patterns at the geographic extent of Canada and the USA. This exercise is helpful because it provides a visual representation of all of the factors hypothesized, explicitly or implicitly, to influence the large-scale diversity patterns of EMF. Additionally, this model is used to identify geographic regions that are predicted to harbour high EMF diversity in an effort to increase the sampling efficiency of future projects.

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