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Impacts of Soil Faunal Community Composition on Model Grassland Ecosystems.

Bradford, M. A. and Jones, T. H. and Bardgett, Richard D. and Black, Helaina I. J. and Boag, B. and Bonkowski, M. and Cook, R. and Eggers, T. and Gange, A. C. and Grayston, S. J. and Kandeler, E. and McCaig, A. E. and Newington, J. E. and Prosser, J. I. and Setälä, H. and Staddon, P. L. and Tordoff, G. M. and Tscherko, D. and Lawton, J. H. (2002) Impacts of Soil Faunal Community Composition on Model Grassland Ecosystems. Science, 298 (5593). pp. 615-618. ISSN 0036-8075

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Abstract

Human impacts, including global change, may alter the composition of soil faunal communities, but consequences for ecosystem functioning are poorly understood. We constructed model grassland systems in the Ecotron controlled environment facility and manipulated soil community composition through assemblages of different animal body sizes. Plant community composition, microbial and root biomass, decomposition rate, and mycorrhizal colonization were all markedly affected. However, two key ecosystem processes, aboveground net primary productivity and net ecosystem productivity, were surprisingly resistant to these changes. We hypothesize that positive and negative faunal-mediated effects in soil communities cancel each other out, causing no net ecosystem effects.

Item Type: Article
Journal or Publication Title: Science
Subjects: Q Science > QH Natural history > QH301 Biology
Departments: Faculty of Science and Technology > School of Computing & Communications
Faculty of Science and Technology > Lancaster Environment Centre
Faculty of Science and Technology > Mathematics and Statistics
ID Code: 10277
Deposited By: Prof Richard Bardgett
Deposited On: 10 Jul 2008 16:44
Refereed?: Yes
Published?: Published
Last Modified: 17 Sep 2013 10:48
Identification Number:
URI: http://eprints.lancs.ac.uk/id/eprint/10277

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