skip to main content

Title: Global data on earthworm abundance, biomass, diversity and corresponding environmental properties
Abstract Earthworms are an important soil taxon as ecosystem engineers, providing a variety of crucial ecosystem functions and services. Little is known about their diversity and distribution at large spatial scales, despite the availability of considerable amounts of local-scale data. Earthworm diversity data, obtained from the primary literature or provided directly by authors, were collated with information on site locations, including coordinates, habitat cover, and soil properties. Datasets were required, at a minimum, to include abundance or biomass of earthworms at a site. Where possible, site-level species lists were included, as well as the abundance and biomass of individual species and ecological groups. This global dataset contains 10,840 sites, with 184 species, from 60 countries and all continents except Antarctica. The data were obtained from 182 published articles, published between 1973 and 2017, and 17 unpublished datasets. Amalgamating data into a single global database will assist researchers in investigating and answering a wide variety of pressing questions, for example, jointly assessing aboveground and belowground biodiversity distributions and drivers of biodiversity change.
; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; more » ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; « less
Award ID(s):
1855277 1831952
Publication Date:
Journal Name:
Scientific Data
Sponsoring Org:
National Science Foundation
More Like this
  1. Campbell, Barbara J. (Ed.)
    ABSTRACT In nutrient-limited conditions, plants rely on rhizosphere microbial members to facilitate nutrient acquisition, and in return, plants provide carbon resources to these root-associated microorganisms. However, atmospheric nutrient deposition can affect plant-microbe relationships by changing soil bacterial composition and by reducing cooperation between microbial taxa and plants. To examine how long-term nutrient addition shapes rhizosphere community composition, we compared traits associated with bacterial (fast-growing copiotrophs, slow-growing oligotrophs) and plant (C 3 forb, C 4 grass) communities residing in a nutrient-poor wetland ecosystem. Results revealed that oligotrophic taxa dominated soil bacterial communities and that fertilization increased the presence of oligotrophs in bulk and rhizosphere communities. Additionally, bacterial species diversity was greatest in fertilized soils, particularly in bulk soils. Nutrient enrichment (fertilized versus unfertilized) and plant association (bulk versus rhizosphere) determined bacterial community composition; bacterial community structure associated with plant functional group (grass versus forb) was similar within treatments but differed between fertilization treatments. The core forb microbiome consisted of 602 unique taxa, and the core grass microbiome consisted of 372 unique taxa. Forb rhizospheres were enriched in potentially disease-suppressive bacterial taxa, and grass rhizospheres were enriched in bacterial taxa associated with complex carbon decomposition. Results from this study demonstrate that fertilizationmore »serves as a strong environmental filter on the soil microbiome, which leads to distinct rhizosphere communities and can shift plant effects on the rhizosphere microbiome. These taxonomic shifts within plant rhizospheres could have implications for plant health and ecosystem functions associated with carbon and nitrogen cycling. IMPORTANCE Over the last century, humans have substantially altered nitrogen and phosphorus cycling. Use of synthetic fertilizer and burning of fossil fuels and biomass have increased nitrogen and phosphorus deposition, which results in unintended fertilization of historically low-nutrient ecosystems. With increased nutrient availability, plant biodiversity is expected to decline, and the abundance of copiotrophic taxa is anticipated to increase in bacterial communities. Here, we address how bacterial communities associated with different plant functional types (forb, grass) shift due to long-term nutrient enrichment. Unlike other studies, results revealed an increase in bacterial diversity, particularly of oligotrophic bacteria in fertilized plots. We observed that nutrient addition strongly determines forb and grass rhizosphere composition, which could indicate different metabolic preferences in the bacterial communities. This study highlights how long-term fertilization of oligotroph-dominated wetlands could alter diversity and metabolism of rhizosphere bacterial communities in unexpected ways.« less
  2. Abstract
    Dataset Abstract A spatial variability study conducted across the LTER Main Site area (45 ha) at KBS prior to dividing the site into 1-ha experimental plots. During the 1988 growing season a stratified unaligned sampling scheme was used to collect 400-600 geo-referenced samples across the site (uniformly planted to a single variety of soybeans) for: geomorphological characteristics (microtopography, soil horizon depths, bulk density, texture); soil chemical characteristics (pH, NO3, NH4, total C, total N, moisture, inorganic P, trace metals); soil biological characteristics (N mineralization potentials, microbial biomass C, microbial biomass N, fungal/bacterial ratios, nematodes and other soil invertebrates; seed bank size); plant weed species abundance, weed biomass at peak standing crop); and insect characteristics (major pest and predator species). Most soil samples were taken before crop emergence, plant phenology samples were taken throughout the growing season, biomass samples were taken at physiological maturity, and insect samples were taken continuously. Dried soil and plant samples are archived for potential future analysis. original data source
  3. Global change drivers, such as anthropogenic nutrient inputs, are increasing globally. Nutrient deposition simultaneously alters plant biodiversity, species composition and ecosystem processes like aboveground biomass production. These changes are underpinned by species extinction, colonisation and shifting relative abundance. Here, we use the Price equation to quantify and link the contributions of species that are lost, gained or that persist to change in aboveground biomass in 59 experimental grassland sites. Under ambient (control) conditions, compositional and biomass turnover was high, and losses (i.e. local extinctions) were balanced by gains (i.e. colonisation). Under fertilisation, the decline in species richness resulted from increased species loss and decreases in species gained. Biomass increase under fertilisation resulted mostly from species that persist and to a lesser extent from species gained. Drivers of ecological change can interact relatively independently with diversity, composition and ecosystem processes and functions such as aboveground biomass due to the individual contributions of species lost, gained or persisting.
  4. Abstract

    To advance understanding of biodiversity and ecosystem function, ecologists seek widely applicable relationships among species diversity and other ecosystem characteristics such as species productivity, biomass, and abundance. These metrics vary widely across ecosystems and no relationship among any combination of them that is valid across habitats, taxa, and spatial scales, has heretofore been found. Here we derive such a relationship, an equation of state, among species richness, energy flow, biomass, and abundance by combining results from the Maximum Entropy Theory of Ecology and the Metabolic Theory of Ecology. It accurately captures the relationship among these state variables in 42 data sets, including vegetation and arthropod communities, that span a wide variety of spatial scales and habitats. The success of our ecological equation of state opens opportunities for estimating difficult-to-measure state variables from measurements of others, adds support for two current theories in ecology, and is a step toward unification in ecology.

  5. The mandate by the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 to increase renewable fuel production in the USA has resulted in extensive research into the sustainability of perennial bioenergy crops such as switchgrass (Panicum virgatum) and miscanthus (Miscanthus× giganteus). Perennial grassland crops have been shown to support greater aboveground biodiversity and ecosystem function than annual crops. However, management considerations, such as what crop to plant or whether to use fertilizer, may alter belowground diversity and ecosystem functioning associated with these grasslands as well. In this study, we compared crop type (switchgrass or miscanthus) and nitrogen fertilization effects on arbuscular mycorrhizal fungal (AMF) and soil nematode abundance, activity, and diversity in a long-term experiment. We quantified AMF root colonization, AMF extra-radical hyphal length, soil glomalin concentrations, AMF richness and diversity, plant-parasitic nematode abundance, and nematode family richness and diversity in each treatment. Mycorrhizal activity and diversity were higher with switchgrass than with miscanthus, leading to higher potential soil carbon contributions via increased hyphal growth and glomalin production. Plant-parasitic nematode (PPN) abundance was 2.3 ×  higher in miscanthus plots compared to switchgrass, mostly due to increases in dagger nematodes (Xiphinema). The higher PPN abundance in miscanthus may be a consequence of lowermore »AMF in this species, as AMF can provide protection against PPN through a variety of mechanisms. Nitrogen fertilization had minor negative effects on AMF and nematode diversity associated with these crops. Overall, we found that crop type and fertilizer application associated with perennial bioenergy cropping systems can have detectable effects on the diversity and composition of soil communities, which may have important consequences for the ecosystem services provided by these systems.« less