Dictionary > Mycoplankton

Mycoplankton

Definition
noun
The fungi or fungus-like component of plankton
Supplement
Plankton pertain to the small organisms that drift, float, or weakly swimming in aquatic habitats. Some of them may be capable of diel vertical migration but they, in general, flow with their surrounding currents. They may be classified according to their trophic level groups: (1) phytoplankton, (2) zooplankton, (3) bacterioplankton, and (4) mycoplankton.
Mycoplankton are the fungi or fungus-like organisms comprising the plankton. They are the saprotrophs, i.e. they live off of dead or decaying organic material in marine and freshwater ecosystems. They are mostly the filamentous free-living fungi and yeasts. Similar to bacterioplankton, mycoplankton play a crucial role in the heterotrophic mineralization and nutrient cycling in the ecosystem.1
Mycoplankton are classified into the following groups: (1) lower fungi (e.g. mastigomycetes), (2) higher fungi (e.g. ascomycetes, basidiomycetes, etc.), and (3) terrestrial fungi (e.g. trichomycetes).2
Word origin: myco– (of fungi) + planktón, (planktós (“wandering”)
See also:

Reference(s):

1 Wang, G., Wang, X., Liu, X., & Li, Q. (2012). “Diversity and biogeochemical function of planktonic fungi in the ocean”. In Raghukumar, C. Biology of marine fungi. Berlin, Heidelberg: Springer-Verlag. pp. 71–88.

2 Sridhar, K. R. (2009). “10. Aquatic fungi – Are they planktonic?”. Plankton Dynamics of Indian Waters. Jaipur, India: Pratiksha Publications. pp. 133–148.


You will also like...

An artistic depiction of Dunkleosteus fish
Fish

The sea was teeming with life. Eventually, through reproduction and continued variation, fish came about. There are over..

Still freshwater and plants
Still Freshwater & Plants

Plants in lentic habitats have features not found in terrestrial plants. They acquired these features as they adapt to t..

Oligodendrocyte and Schwann cell
The Central Nervous System

Myelin sheath is essential for a faster conductivity of signals. Know more about this feature of some neurons in the Cen..

IQ, Creativity and Learning
IQ, Creativity and Learning

Human intelligence provided the means to utilize abstract ideas and implement reasoning. This tutorial takes a further l..

Human Neurology
Human Neurology

Human Neurology deals essentially with the nervous system of humans. It also features the various theories put forward b..

Wart-like leaf galls on grape leaves
Plant Cell Defense

Plants protect themselves by releasing hydrogen peroxide to fight against fungal invasion. Another way is by secreting c..