Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Why are fungi good indicators of pollution?

No, fungi are not good indicators of pollution, but lichen does.Why are fungi good indicators of pollution?
Because lichens, mosses, ect. lack roots, they must obtain all their nutrients from rainwater. Lichens and many mosses lack protective surfaces that can selectively block out elements including pollutants that are dissolved in rainwater. Instead, they act like sponges, absorbing everything. Since it is known that different species (especially lichens) vary in sensitivity to air pollution, scientists can use these organisms as monitors of air pollution and as indicators of air quality.

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