Data from: Long-term experimental warming alters community composition of ascomycetes in Alaskan moist and dry arctic tundra
Semenova, Tatiana A. et al. (2014), Data from: Long-term experimental warming alters community composition of ascomycetes in Alaskan moist and dry arctic tundra, Dryad, Dataset, https://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.2fc32
Arctic tundra regions have been responding to global warming with visible changes in plant community composition, including expansion of shrubs and declines in lichens and bryophytes. Even though it is well-known that the majority of arctic plants are associated with their symbiotic fungi, how fungal community composition will be different with climate warming remains largely unknown. In this study, we addressed the effects of long-term (18 years) experimental warming on the community composition and taxonomic richness of soil ascomycetes in dry and moist tundra types. Using deep Ion Torrent sequencing we quantified how OTU assemblage and richness of different orders of Ascomycota changed in response to summer warming. Experimental warming significantly altered ascomycete communities with stronger responses observed in the moist tundra compared to dry tundra. The proportion of several lichenized and moss-associated fungi decreased with warming, while the proportion of several plant and insect pathogens and saprotrophic species was higher in the warming treatment. The observed alterations in both taxonomic and ecological groups of ascomycetes are discussed in relation to previously reported warming-induced shifts in arctic plant communities, including decline in lichens and bryophytes and increase in coverage and biomass of shrubs.