Halophilic fungi in a polyhaline estuarine habitat


Valerie Gonsalves, Shweta Nayak and Sarita Nazareth*

Halophilic mycobiota was isolated from Mandovi estuary and it was dominated by Aspergillus and Penicillium species. Cladosporium and Eurotium were found in lesser numbers while obligate halophiles were found only amongst the aspergilla and they were all identified as Aspergillus penicillioides. Some aspergilli and all the isolates of Penicillium, Cladosporium and Eurotium were facultative halophiles. There were significant differences in growth of each isolate at different salt concentrations. Most of the isolates were euryhaline, having a wide range of salt tolerance; a few were stenohaline, with a narrow range of halotolerance. The isolates were mainly moderate halophiles, with a very few slight halophiles. Isolation of obligate halophilic fungi from polyhaline environment of an estuary is hereby reported for the first time.

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