Distribution and ecology of the superior mushrooms of the Aulnaie of Ain Khiar (El Kala National Park, Northeastern Algeria)
The macro-ecology of the superior mushrooms in the peat land of the El Kala National Park (Algeria) is totally unknown. The research presented here aims at determining the environmental factors which might explain the distribution of mushrooms and contribute to the knowledge of the mycofloristic composition of this particular environment. For that purpose, we selected a protected site in the El Kala National Park, classified RAMSAR since 2002 as: “the Peat land of Ain Khiar". The carpophores of mushrooms were exhaustively recorded on a monthly basis from November, 2003 until May 2008, and several environmental factors which might determine the distribution of the species such as altitude, acidity of the ground, the degree of humidification of peat land, floral composition of the vegetation were also recorded. The site of Ain Khiar is part of 60 sites studied at the El Kala National Park, which will be the subject of future other publications. Twenty two species were collected on the site, among which 6 species (25 %) were found to be unique to this site. A differentiated analysis according to functional groups of macrofungi showed that the 15 saprotrophs species are determined by several factors of comparable importance; while the ectomicorrhizal are mainly determined by the most dominant species. A more relevant analysis of the ecology of the fungal communities is thus obtained by distinguishing the functional groups, their specific composition being determined by different environmental factors.
Key words: Macrofungi, inventory, Peat Land of Ain Khiar, trophic status, distribution.