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Fungi, especially diverse in Tasmania, contribute much to the character of rainforests in particular and are food sources for grazing animals especially insects. Some species exist in symbiosis with other plants (e.g. they live on roots and fix nitrogen from the air into a form useable by plants, or, help supply phosphorus to their host plant). They are also vital for recycling organic matter.
Phytophthora cinnamomi (also known as root rot, cinnamon fungus or jarrah dieback) is an introduced fungus that can cause serious disease and plant death in native Tasmanian vegetation. Phytophthora is now well established in many areas of moorland, heathland and dry eucalypt forest in Tasmania, and has the potential to significantly alter the ecology of these vegetation types.