• Mycorrhizae fungi: Symbiotic Fungi• Saprotrophic fungi: Decomposers• Parasitic fungi: Fungi that leech nutrients from other organisms• Pathogenic fungi: Disease-causing fungi
• Most mycologists currently recognize five phyla of fungi.
• Name: Chytrids• 1,000 species• Asexual spores and sexual gametes are motile; they have flagella.• They are the only fungal group with flagellated cells.• They live mostly in water.• Are thought to be one of the earliest fungal groups to branch off from other fungi.
• Name: Zygomycetes• 1,000 species• They are terrestrial, meaning they live on land.• They are mostly saprotrophs (decomposers), though there are some parasitic species, and a very small percentage that are neutral.• The hyphae (filaments) lack septa (internal cross walls); only in their reproductive structures are there septa.• The hyphae of some grow rapidly into food or fruits.
• Name: Glomeromycetes• 160 species• Because of their arbuscular mycorrhizae, these fungi are very important ecologically.• Many plants form mycorrhizal relationships with glomeromycetes.
• Name: Acomycetes• 65,000 species• Commonly known as sac fungi.• A diverse group that includes organisms that live in marine, freshwater, and terrestrial habitats.• Examples: yeast, molds, morels, truffles• Important in digesting cellulose (found in plants), lignin (found in wood) , and collagen (found in connective tissues of animals).• Many form lichens which share a symbiotic relationship between fungi and a photosynthetic cell.
• Name: Basidiomycetes• Often make important decomposers and ectomycorrhial fungi.• Commonly called club fungi.• Unusual in having long-lived, dikaryotic mycelium.• The fruit of the organisms are what we call mushrooms.• Asexual reproduction is rare.