Camarophyllopsis schulzeri is a European species of seminatural grasslands, to a lesser degree rich forests, up to subalpine areas. The habitats are declining mainly due to changing agricultural practices (intensification, withgrowing), development projects and pollution (airborne nitrogen deposition). The species is redlisted in many countries. Over the distribution range we assume a total habitat and population decline of 30-50% over the past 50 years (approximately three generations: one generation is assumed to be about 17 years). Habitat quality has also become impaired and the decline in population size over this time could be even higher. This decline in habitat is ongoing and expected to continue over the next 50 years. GBIF and national databases list more than 1200 occurrences, and the real number of localities might be >10000, each with an estimate of 10 individuals. The species is assumed to have a population of more than 100,000 mature individuals. The populations in grasslands could have a decline near 50%, while populations in forest etc. decline less, probably 10-20% in 50 years. At a global scale (i.e. Europe and Russia) the population decline is assumed to be on average >30% in 50 years (past, present and future). The species meets the threshold for VU (A2c+3c+4c).
The taxonomic status of a few records in GBIF from N America and Australia is uncertain. These are excluded here, as we suspect they could belong to other taxa. No evidence of this is found. But according to Hesler & Smith (1963: 106) the spores of one Michigan collection were slightly larger than for European material. Therefore these non European records are considered a separate species.
A European species, mostly in semi-natural grasslands, which are strongly declining. Also occurring in rich forests.
Camarophyllopsis schulzeri is widespread in many countries of northern and central Europe and Russia. There is a lack of information from southern and eastern Europe.
Camarophyllopsis schulzeri is widespread in Scandinavia and Great Britain, but rare to very rare in the rest of Europe. It is decreasing, reflected by its classification in many national red lists; critically endangered in Austria (last report 1989) and Switzerland, vulnerable in Denmark and the Netherlands and near threatened in Norway, Sweden and Finland. According to GBIF (2021) and national databases there are >1200 occurrences from Europe. The total number of localities is unknown, but supposed to exceed 10,000 and the number of mature individuals probably >100,000. Based on available information on trends in seminatural grasslands, Griffith et al. (2013) estimated a habitat loss of 90% over the last 75 years for the CHEG-fungi (grassland fungi of Clavariaceae, Hygrocybe s.l., Entoloma and Geoglossaceae) as a whole in Western Europe. According to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), the area of grasslands in the EU declined by 12.8% over 13 years (1990-2003). Also other sources point to a habitat loss in seminatural grasslands of roughly 1% per year in Europe over a longer time, although the data quality is not always very good. The habitat quality of seminatural grasslands is also declining, strengthening the population decline. More than 75% of the grasslands habitats are in an unfavourable conservation status (http://ec.europa. eu/environment/nature/knowledge/ rep_habitats/index_en.htm#csa). A lesser part of the population occur in calcareous forests which have also declined, probably 15-20% in 50 years. Over the whole distribution range we assume a total habitat loss and population decline of 30-50% over the last 50 years. As the habitat quality is also declining, population decline could be higher. Much of European grasslands have bad habitat quality. This trend is ongoing and expected to continue in the future (Janssen et al. 2016).
Population Trend: Decreasing
Camarophyllopsis schulzeri is a characteristic species of old, unimproved, low productive grasslands on loamy, weakly acid to basic, often calcareous soils. It occasionally grows also in scrub and rich deciduous (broadleaved) forests on moist to dry, base-rich soils (Boertmann 2012). It is found up to 960 m asl. in Norway (northern boreal zone) and to 1240 in Switzerland. Like waxcaps the species probably lives in biotrophic association with herbaceous plants, but details are unknown (Halbwachs et al. 2018). In Norway, most localities of the species are semi-natural grasslands, while ca. 6.5% of the ca. 260 localities are rich broadleaved forests (Jordal et al. 2016). A similar habitat pattern is reported from Sweden, Denmark and other countries. In Russia, the situation is generally the same, but most of the finds are associated with calcareous soils, including areas with pronounced karst formations. The fruit bodies are short-lived (weeks), but the mycelium is suspected to be longlived; >50-100 years.
Threats are grassland improvement (fertilizer application and soil disturbance) for agro-industry farming, abandoning of low productive grasslands, and forest plantations on poor grassland sites. Moreover the species is vulnerable for acidification and nitrogen deposition. Also in some places changed land use with the construction of roads, industrial areas, settlements etc. Decline is expected to continue, as at least the areas of seminatural grasslands are of little economic importance in modern agriculture. Most CHEG grasslands (see Population) are among types assessed as VU, EN or CR in the EU Red List of habitats (Janssen et al. 2016). Forests can be clearcut. And all types of noted habitats can be destroyed by exploitation.
The habitats should be protected against destruction due to intensification of agriculture, any commercial use of calcareous forests, or development plans. The maintaining of seminatural grasslands demands yearly grazing or mowing. Grazing by heavy animals destroys part of the soil, light animals like sheep should be recommended. Habitat conservation by governmental support to traditional agricultural practices is most important, this exists in many countries to maintain extensive agricultural areas, and should be extended to larger areas than today.
Further ecological research is needed to clarify the nutrient strategy of Camarophyllopsis species. Phylogenetic studies of related species in America and Australia. Management plans are needed. Habitat trends should be monitored.
No use or trade is known.
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