belong to the Kingdom Eumycota, and are usually found on living mangrove
plants or on dead decaying vegetation, as saprophytes, parasites or symbionts.
Parasitic species cause such diseases as 'die-back' of
mangroves, but the majority are saprophytic on wood debris and leaf
litter, contributing as decomposers to the mangrove ecosystem's food chain.
Information about fungal biology is available in the Singapore Science Centre's
"Guide to Tropical Fungi".
Above the tide line
A number of large,
wood-digesting fungi (lignicolous macrofungi) belonging the Basidiomycotina
may be found on dead tree trunks and fallen branches. What we see
are their reproductive/fruiting bodies, which are fairly resistant
to dry weather, while their thread-like thallus (mycelium) grows and
ramifies through the wood tissues.
Lentinus spp. have leathery
and 'typical' mushroom fruiting bodies each consisting of a stalk
(stipe) and a cap (pileus) and tend to grow gregariously.
Fungus on underside
of a boardwalk
spp., Family Polyporaceae) are the hard and leathery brown fruiting
bodies which grow out from tree trunks. The lower surface of the fruiting
body bears many pores through which the spores are discharged and
dispersed by wind.
fungi, belonging to the same family are similar but the
leathery fruiting body may be resupinate and thin.
fungus (Schizophyllum commune) has a fruiting body
which is usually dissected into segments, below which are the gills
bearing the spores. This atypically shaped 'mushroom' is fairly resistant
to dry weather. They are usually found growing on dead coconut tree
trunks, or boardwalks. The Yellow jelly fungus
(Dacryopinax spathularia) is also found on boardwalks.
About fungi in the mangrove forest proper.