To assess the relationship between resource use and hyphal growth in a cord-forming basidiomycete, Phanerochaete velutina, soil microcosm experiments were conducted using wood blocks of three different sizes in three different soil quantities, thereby simulating the different amounts of available nutrients. The highest percentage weight loss was observed in the smallest wood blocks after a 27-d incubation period in soil microcosms, although the percentage weight loss over the 2-month pure culture colonization prior to inoculation was not significantly different among various block sizes. The greatest hyphal outgrowth was also observed in the smallest wood blocks and was positively associated with wood decay. The slopes of the regression lines between hyphal coverage and percentage wood mass loss were identical among different wood sizes, but the slopes between hyphal coverage and absolute wood mass loss were steeper in the smaller wood blocks than that in largest one. These results suggest that the level of intensity of mycelial foraging for new resources in the soil depends on the percentage of the amount of wood resource utilized, and not on the absolute amount of carbon obtained from the wood.
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