Biological Soil Crusts: An Organizing Principle in Drylands by Bettina Weber, Burkhard Büdel, Jayne Belnap

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By Bettina Weber, Burkhard Büdel, Jayne Belnap

This quantity summarizes our present figuring out of organic soil crusts (biocrusts), that are omnipresent in dryland areas. when you consider that they conceal the soil floor, they impression, or maybe regulate, all floor trade approaches. Being one of many oldest terrestrial groups, biocrusts contain a excessive range of cyanobacteria, algae, lichens and bryophytes including uncounted micro organism, and fungi. The authors express that biocrusts are a vital part of dryland ecosystems, stabilizing soils, influencing plant germination and development, and enjoying a key function in carbon, nitrogen and water biking. preliminary makes an attempt were made to exploit biocrusts as versions in ecological thought. nevertheless, biocrusts are endangered by way of neighborhood disruptions and worldwide switch, highlighting the necessity for superior restoration equipment. This booklet bargains a finished evaluate of the interesting box of biocrust study, making it critical not just for scientists during this sector, but in addition for land managers, coverage makers, and an individual drawn to the environment.

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In: Desikachary TV (ed) Taxonomy and biology of blue-green algae. Bangalore Press, Bangalore, pp 328–331 Marstaller R (1971) Zur Kenntnis der Gesellschaften des Toninion-Verbandes im Unstruttal zwischen Nebra und Artern sowie im Kyffha¨usergebirge. Hercynia 8:34–51 Martin TL (1939) The occurrence of algae in some virgin Utah soils. Soil Sci Soc Am Proc 4:249–250 Martin JP, Waksman SA (1940) Influence of microorganisms on soil aggregation and erosion. Soil Sci 150:29–47 Mayland HF, MacIntosh TH, Fuller WH (1966) Fixation of isotopic nitrogen on a semiarid soil by algal crust organisms.

Booth 1941; Fletcher and Martin 1948). These authors noted that after rains, soil surfaces often turn green, which alerted them to the presence of the algae. Fletcher and Martin also observed that if one picked up a piece of these crusts (Fig. 6), the soil held together and the underside of “these algae-impregnated crusts had a fuzzy appearance with sand grains adhering to what proved to be fungus mycelium”. Both Booth (1941) and Fletcher and Martin (1948) went on to test how the presence of the algae affected local hydrology, and Fletcher and Martin also measured their influence on soil texture, organic matter, and nitrogen.

Paschoud, Gene`ve 2 How Biological Soil Crusts Became Recognized as a Functional Unit: A. . 33 €kologische Vogel S (1955) Niedere “Fensterpflanzen” in der su¨dafrikanischen Wu¨ste. Eine o Schilderung. Beitr Biol Pfl 31:45–135 von Humboldt A (1859) Ansichten der Natur mit wissenschaftlichen Erla¨uterungen, 2nd edn. Cotta’scher Verlag, Stuttgart West NE (1990) Structure and function of microphytic soil crusts in wildland ecosystems of arid to semi-arid regions. Adv Ecol Res 20:179–223 West NE, Skujins J (1977) The nitrogen cycle in North American cold winter semi-desert ecosystems.

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