• 1Proposed
  • 2Under Assessment
  • 3Preliminary Assessed
  • 4Assessed
  • 5Published

Diacheopsis kowalskii Mar. Mey. & Poulain

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Scientific name
Diacheopsis kowalskii
Mar. Mey. & Poulain
Common names
IUCN Specialist Group
Chytrid, Zygomycete, Downy Mildew and Slime Mould
Assessment status
Proposed by
Tetiana Kryvomaz
Tetiana Kryvomaz
Tetiana Kryvomaz
Comments etc.
Anders Dahlberg, Tommy Knutsson

Assessment Notes

Taxonomic notes

Diacheopsis kowalskii described by Marianne Meyer and Michel Poulain in 1998 from French Alps. This species can be recognized from others species of Diacheopsis by its bicolor capillitium, alternately brown and hyaline.

Why suggested for a Global Red List Assessment?

Diacheopsis kowalskii is a very rare species belonging to the ecological group of nivicolous myxomycetes growing in spring near the melting snow, especially on lower stalks of shrubs of Rhododendron ferrugineum. Species directly affected by climate change by reducing the number of weeks in which the substrate must be covered by snow. The population can decline from habitat extent, as result for France this species estimated as VU (Vulnerable) B2b. But during the workshop at Ekenäs in Feb 2015, its present preliminary status was found to be DD (Data Deficient).

Geographic range

EUROPE: France (Savoie).

Population and Trends

Very rare species from nivicolous ecological group, difficult evaluate size of population.
The population can decline from habitat extent. For example, in 2003 Rhododendron ferrugineum was destroed by new sky stations in French Alps (Savoie, Bourg-Saint-Maurice), after this Diacheopsis kowalskii not find more in this locality.
For France this species estimated VU (Vulnerable) B2b.

Population Trend: Uncertain

Habitat and Ecology

D. kowalskii grows in spring near melting snowbanks in high altitude in mountain after at least 3 months of snow covering it’s substrate, especially on lower stalks of shrubs of Rhododendron ferrugineum. This species is one of the so-called “nivicolous” or snowline myxomycetes, found on both living and dead plant material next to melting snow patches in mountainous habitats, typically where there is high insolation in spring. In the “nivicolous” habitat, snow cover prevents abrupt soil temperature changes between night and day, provides free water and a ground-level microclimate beneath or near the melting snow favourable for development of vegetative and fruiting stages. The ecological rôle played by myxomycetes remains poorly understood. In general, these organisms feeding only during their vegetative (also called “plasmodial”) state, and not feeding when in their fruiting state. They may be encountered on living plant material (e.g. leaves and twigs), in both vegetative and fruiting states, but in such cases the plant material is only a substratum, not a source of nutrition. When myxomycetes are found in their vegetative state specifically on dead plant material, the plant material may be both a substratum and a source of nutrition. It is also possible that in their vegetative state, myxomycetes feed on dead animal remains, living and dead bacteria, fungal hyphae and spores, and other organic material. Nothing is known about interactions between the present species and other organisms, but its associated organisms, ecological preferences and geographical distribution suggest that, in interactions, it is similar to this general picture.


The ecological group of nivicolous Myxomycetes is directly affected by change of climate with, as consequence, a diminution of weeks during the substrate is covered by snow.

Human intrusions & disturbanceClimate change & severe weather

Conservation Actions

Conservation of suitable habitats for this species.  Monitoring of the habitat status and populations. Organization of legal protection of suitable localities.

Site/area protectionResource & habitat protectionSite/area managementHabitat & natural process restorationFormal educationTrainingNon-monetary values

Research needed

Research world distibution in spesific locality. For example, there are no information about Diacheopsis kowalskii from Himalayan, which is the centre of diversity for Rhododendron.

Population size, distribution & trendsLife history & ecologyThreatsActionsMonitoring

Use and Trade


Meyer,M., Poulain, M. 1998: Diacheopsis kowalskii et Diacheopsis pauxilla - deux novelles especies de myxomycetes. Bull.Fed.Myc.Dauphine-Savoie 150: 27-37.
Gabriel Moreno, Harald Singer, Antonio Sánchez, Carlos Illana (2006). Diacheopsis metallica and Diacheopsis kowalskii: comparison of two distinct myxomycete species. Mycological Progress Volume 5, Issue 3, pp 129-135.
MORENO G., SINGER H., ILLANA C. (2005) The nivicolous myxomycetes described by MARIANNE MEYER, MICHEL POULAIN and JEAN BOZONNET. Österr. Z. Pilzk. 14, p. 1-10
Lado, C. (2015): An on line nomenclatural information system of Eumycetozoa (2005-2015). Real Jardín Botánico, CSIC. Madrid, Spain. http://www.nomen.eumycetozoa.com.
Eumycetozoa. http://www.discoverlife.org/mp/20q?guide=Myxomycetes&flags=HAS:
Annotated Checklist for the Myxomycota of Germany. http://www.gbif-mycology.de/DatabaseClients/GBIFmyxchecklist/

Country occurrence

Regional Population and Trends

Country Trend Redlisted