Why is there so much variation in spore morphology among fungal species?

I am part of a team of researchers uncovering a large inter-specific variation in the traits of fungal spores: the structures that many fungi use to reproduce (similar to seeds and eggs). I am interested in determining whether such variation correspond to particular habitats or lifestyles (for example, are larger spores are more common in certain habitats while smaller spores are more common in others?)

I am particularly interested in addressing this question with arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi because I have expertise with this group and because of their important role as symbionts for plants. For this question, I am working in close collaboration with Jeff Powell at Western Sydney University and Bala Chaudhary at DePaul University.

You can check this publication to know more about this project:

Aguilar-Trigueros,C. A., Hempel, S., Powell, J. R., Cornwell, W. K., & Rillig, M. C. (2019). Bridging reproductive and microbial ecology: a case study in arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi. The ISME Journal, 13(4), 873-884. and its github page