Soil Quality Mapping Studies Using Nematodes as Bioindicators


Soil quality is one of the most important factors in sustaining the global biosphere and developing sustainable agricultural practices. Land use and management practices greatly impact the direction and degree of soil quality changes in time and space. Understanding the effects of land use and management practices on soil quality and its indicators has been identified as one of the most important goals for modern soil science. Soil quality mapping study represents a method for assessing and mapping soil quality changes in time and space in small units. For the present study, changes in the physical, chemical parameters and nematode density of the soils in the rural and urban areas of Thiruvananthapuram district, Kerala, were determined. The soil samples were collected from seven different categories of contaminated soils namely coastal area, sewage disposal area, industrial area, road-side area, agricultural area, market area and gasoline station area, and also from two control stations in rural and urban areas. The soil physico-chemical parameters and nematode density were determined. Geostatistics combined with GIS was applied to analyze the spatial variability of soil physico-chemical characteristics and nematode density. This soil quality mapping study provides a basis for identifying tension zones and serves as a triggering mechanism for implementation of soil contamination mitigating strategies.

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L. Sthanu, J. Sarasamma, R. Iyer and M. Chellappan, "Soil Quality Mapping Studies Using Nematodes as Bioindicators," Open Journal of Soil Science, Vol. 3 No. 7, 2013, pp. 323-335. doi: 10.4236/ojss.2013.37037.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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