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The website of Dr Richard O'Hanlon

About this site

This site was set up to allow free access to some of my peer review publications, oral and poster presentations dealing with mycology, forest pathology and forest ecology.

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About the author

I graduated from the University of Limerick with an honours degree in Science education in 2007. I then completed a PhD project (see below) examining the diversity of fungi in Irish forests. I have also spent time researching abroad in Oregon State University and in the University of British Columbia. In 2012 I completed an International Fellowship at the World Forest Institute in Portland Oregon which examined the macrofungal communities of Sitka spruce forests in its native and non-native range. I am interested in many aspects of mycology, forest ecology and plant pathology, including field mycology, macrofungal (especially ectomycorrhizal) diversity and ecology, and forest pathology.

My PhD research

My PhD research (available under downloads) was undertaken at the Department of Life sciences, University of Limerick under supervision of Dr Tom Harrington. I examined the macrofungal diversity in Irish oak, ash, Scots pine and Sitka spruce forests over three years. The main findings were (i) Non-native forests in Ireland have similarly high fungal biodiversity as native forests, (ii) each forest has a distinctive fungal community related to the dominant tree species of the forest, (iii) the below-ground ectomycorrhizal fungi of non-native forests are as diverse as that of native forests (iv) plantations of the non-native tree species Sitka spruce and Scots pine may be beneficial for fungal biodiversity, as they provide a complimentary habitat for fungi in the absence of native forests.

Current position

I am the principal plant pathologist at the Agri-Food and Biosciences Insitiute (AFBI), Belfast, Northern Ireland.