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14.3: Introduction to Fungi

Difficulty Level: At Grade Created by: CK-12
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Lesson 14.3: True or False

Name___________________ Class______________ Date________

Write true if the statement is true or false if the statement is false.

_____ 1. Fungi are a kingdom in the domain Prokarya.

_____ 2. Mushrooms are fungi.

_____ 3. Yeasts are fungi.

_____ 4. Amoeba are fungi.

_____ 5. Fungi spend most of their life cycle in the diploid state.

_____ 6. Fungi have cell walls made of cellulose, just like plants do.

_____ 7. Many fungi grow as hyphae.

_____ 8. Most fungi reproduce only by sexual reproduction.

_____ 9. A fungal spore is a diploid cell produced by meiosis of the parent cell.

_____ 10. Fungal spores can be transported by wind, water, and even by traveling on other organisms.

_____ 11. A yeast cell produced by budding off of a parent cell is genetically identical to the parent cell.

_____ 12. Mating of two haploid fungal hyphae produces a diploid zygospore.

_____ 13. Fungi first colonized land at about the same time as plants did.

_____ 14. In general, fungi are able to move themselves around.

_____ 15. Baker's yeast is a fungus.

Lesson 14.3: Critical Reading

Name___________________ Class______________ Date________

Read these passages from the text and answer the questions that follow.

Reproduction of Fungi

The majority of fungi can reproduce both asexually and sexually. This allows them to adjust to conditions in the environment. They can spread quickly through asexual reproduction when conditions are stable. They can increase their genetic variation through sexual reproduction when conditions are changing and variation may help them survive.

Asexual Reproduction

Almost all fungi reproduce asexually by producing spores. A fungi spore is a haploid cell produced by mitosis from a haploid parent cell. It is genetically identical to the parent cell. Fungi spores can develop into new haploid individuals without being fertilized.

Spores may be dispersed by moving water, wind, or other organisms. Some fungi even have “cannons” that “shoot” the spores far from the parent organism. This helps to ensure that the offspring will not have to compete with the parents for space or other resources. You are probably familiar with puffballs. They release a cloud of spores when knocked or stepped on. Wherever the spores happen to land, they do not germinate until conditions are favorable for growth. Then they develop into new hyphae. Yeasts do not produce spores. Instead, they reproduce asexually by budding. Budding is the pinching off of an offspring from the parent cell. The offspring cell is genetically identical to the parent.

Sexual Reproduction

Sexual reproduction also occurs in virtually all fungi. This involves mating between two haploid hyphae. During mating, two haploid parent cells fuse, forming a diploid spore called a zygospore. The zygospore is genetically different from the parents. After the zygospore germinates, it can undergo meiosis, forming haploid cells that develop into new hyphae.


1. How do fungi benefit from being able to reproduce both asexually and sexually?

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2. What are fungal spores? How are they made?

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3. Why have fungi evolved mechanisms for dispersal of their spores? Name a few of these mechanisms.

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4. How do many yeast reproduce asexually? What is this process called?

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5. How do fungi mate?

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Lesson 14.3: Multiple Choice

Name___________________ Class______________ Date________

Circle the letter of the correct choice.

  1. The thread-like filaments of fungi are called
    1. hyphae.
    2. spores.
    3. zygospores.
    4. chitin.
  2. The largest known fungus is
    1. in the Sahara desert and is 3 square feet.
    2. in Antarctica and covers the entire surface of the continent.
    3. in Oregon and covers 8.9 square kilometers.
    4. none of the above.
  3. When environmental conditions are favorable, ________ is generally more beneficial for a fungal species.
    1. asexual reproduction
    2. sexual reproduction
    3. moving to a new location
    4. stopping reproduction completely
  4. Sexual reproduction of fungi involves
    1. production of genetically identical offspring.
    2. fusion of six haploid parent cells to form one giant cell.
    3. fusion of two haploid parent cells to form a zygospore.
    4. fusion of two diploid parent cells to form a tetraploid spore.
  5. Germination of a diploid zygospore followed by meiosis produces
    1. four haploid cells.
    2. four diploid cells.
    3. two diploid cells.
    4. a yeast bud.
  6. The earliest fungi evolved
    1. independently from thousands of different ancestors.
    2. at least 600 million years ago.
    3. before prokaryotes.
    4. after the first humans appeared on the earth.
  7. One way that fungi are similar to plants is
    1. they both have cell walls made of cellulose.
    2. they both carry out photosynthesis.
    3. they both move rapidly from place to place.
    4. none of the above.
  8. The phylum of fungi that is found in Antarctica, is often part of a symbiotic relationship, and is found in terrestrial ecosystems throughout the world is
    1. protozoa.
    2. ascomycota.
    3. algae.
    4. water mold.

Lesson 14.3: Vocabulary I

Name___________________ Class______________ Date________

Match the vocabulary word with the proper definition.


_____ 1. a kingdom whose members include mushrooms

_____ 2. thread-like filaments consisting of haploid cells connected end-to-end and which can form branches

_____ 3. having two copies of each kind of chromosome (2n)

_____ 4. two sequential cell divisions producing four cells, each of which has half the number of chromosomes as the parent cell

_____ 5. the general name for cell division in all organisms that produces cells that have the same number of chromosomes as the parent cell

_____ 6. a diploid spore formed by fusion of two haploid cells

_____ 7. the material that makes up the cell wall of fungi

_____ 8. the material that makes up the cell wall of plants

_____ 9. a mass of fungal hyphae

_____ 10. a form of asexual reproduction in yeast

_____ 11. a reproductive cell specialized for dispersal and survival in harsh environmental conditions

_____ 12. having one copy of each kind of chromosome (n)


a. budding

b. cellulose

c. chitin

d. diploid

e. haploid

f. fungi

g. hyphae

h. meiosis

i. mitosis

j. mycelium

k. spore

l. zygospore

Lesson 14.3: Vocabulary II

Name___________________ Class______________ Date________

Fill in the blank with the appropriate term.

1. Fusion of two haploid fungal cells produces a __________.

2. __________ is the kingdom whose members include baker's yeast and mushrooms.

3. Many fungi can make thread-like filaments called __________, which consists of haploid cells aligned end-to-end and which may form branches.

4. Haploid cells can be formed via __________ of a diploid zygospore.

5. A haploid offspring cell is produced by __________ of a haploid parent cell.

6. A puffball mushroom releases __________ into the air when it is disturbed.

7. A __________ is a mass of fungal hyphae.

8. A __________ cell is said to have 2n number of chromosomes.

9. A __________ cell is said to have n number of chromosomes.

10. The cell wall of a growing plant cell is of made primarily of __________.

11. The cell wall of a fungus is made of __________.

12. Yeast can reproduce asexually by __________, a process in which a bleb-like extension pinches off from the parent cell.

Lesson 14.3: Critical Writing

Name___________________ Class______________ Date________

Thoroughly answer the question below. Use appropriate academic vocabulary and clear and complete sentences.

Why were fungi once classified as plants? What findings led to their reclassification into their own kingdom?

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