Soil: Fauna

Authored by: Mary C. Savin

Landscape and Land Capacity

Print publication date:  June  2020
Online publication date:  May  2020

Print ISBN: 9781138334083
eBook ISBN: 9780429445552
Adobe ISBN:


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Soil fauna are diverse, abundant, and critical to ecosystem functions. Soil fauna account for almost one-quarter of living species and facilitate important ecological interactions that contribute to decomposition, nutrient cycling, and stabilization of terrestrial ecosystems. Soil fauna are composed of diverse groups of organisms that range across orders of magnitude in size, with many less than a few centimeters or even a few millimeters. These organisms function under different abiotic conditions, and despite their small size, contribute to characteristics and processes observable at field and landscape scales. Future research efforts that build upon past discoveries should enhance understanding of how soil fauna connect aboveground and belowground ecology for proper management and sustainability of ecosystems and ecosystem services.

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