Mycologist 9: 1995; p 46

Joint BMS-MSA Policy Statement On Fungal Biodiversity and Conservation

Fungi are a fundamentally important group of organisms that interact with all other organisms, including humans. Fungi have traditionally been used as an important source of food and drink and pharmaceuticals including antibiotics. Furthermore, fungi mediate critical biological and ecological processes in natural and agricultural ecosystems, including the regulation of soil fertility and nutrient cycling, facilitation of mineral nutrient uptake in plants, and regulation of plant and animal populations. Fungi and lichenized fungi can serve as indicator species for differentiating old-growth and more recently disturbed habitats, and may be useful for monitoring changes and degradation of the biotic and abiotic environment.
     1. The British Mycological Society and the Mycological Society of America are committed to the conservation of fungi and their habitats. To this end they will foster and support those activities which will ensure the survival of fungal populations.
     2. The Societies will encourage research on the factors that maintain or cause declines in fungal populations and diversity.
     3. The Societies will actively promote a wider understanding of the importance of fungi and their biology, and in particular their significance in the conservation of natural communities, as a contribution to environmental education.
     4. The Societies will provide information on rare and endangered fungal taxa, which may be helpful in evaluating sites and in protection of critical habitats.
     5. The Societies, where possible, will seek to provide information concerning the mycoflora of sites which may be threatened, so that management appropriate to fungal conservation may be planned. The Societies will provide advice to landowners, conservation bodies and local and central Government on the mycological importance of their land and of suitable conservation measures that may be adopted.
     6. The Societies will work toward making authoritative lists of fungi available.
     7. The Societies will encourage the development of standard methods for measuring and monitoring biodiversity of fungi.
     8. The Societies will encourage the training of mycologists at all levels in order to achieve the above.


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