Fungi are found all around the world and grow in a wide range of habitats, including deserts. Most grow on land (terrestrial) environments, but several species live only in aquatic habitats. Most fungi live in either soil or dead matter, and many are symbionts of plants, animals, or other fungi.
In this way, do fungi decompose animals?
Fungi like mushrooms, mildew, mold and toadstools are not plants. They don't have chlorophyll so they can't make their own food. Fungi release enzymes that decompose dead plants and animals. Fungi absorb nutrients from the organisms they are decomposing!
How do fungi benefit the environment?
As saprobes, fungi help maintain a sustainable ecosystem for the animals and plants that share the same habitat. In addition to replenishing the environment with nutrients, fungi interact directly with other organisms in beneficial, but sometimes damaging, ways.
What is the role of fungi in the ecosystem?
Fungi play an important role in energy cycling within, and between, ecosystems. Fungi are found in terrestrial, marine and freshwater environments, and are part of a diverse community of “decomposers” that break down dead plants and animals.