Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungal (AMF) biodiversity from 30 sites throughout the Phoenix, USA, metropolitan area was compared to determine the impact of urbanization on AMF communities. Spores from pot cultures started with soil collected from non-indigenous and indigenous plants at urban sites and from indigenous plants at desert sites were identified. The total number of species detected, number of species per plant and species richness (no. of AMF species/sampling site) were fewer at the urban sites in comparison to desert sites, but were similar between urban sites with indigenous plants and those with non-indigenous plants. There was a significant overlap in the species composition between desert and urban sites with about 70% of the species detected at both urban and desert locations. The relative frequency of AMF species varied between desert and urban sites with several frequently detected species from desert areas (detected in ∼40% of collected samples) detected in fewer than 10% of samples from urban areas. Although it appears that urbanization has an impact on AMF communities, this effect does not appear to be linked to the presence of non-indigenous plant species in these areas. Future studies will be needed to determine the drivers of alterations in AMF community structure in urban areas.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Environmental Science(all)