Preprint Review Version 1 This version is not peer-reviewed

Soil microarthropods and soil health: Intersection of decomposition and pest suppression

Version 1 : Received: 6 November 2019 / Approved: 8 November 2019 / Online: 8 November 2019 (10:39:16 CET)

How to cite: Neher, D.A.; Barbercheck, M.E. Soil microarthropods and soil health: Intersection of decomposition and pest suppression. Preprints 2019, 2019110093 (doi: 10.20944/preprints201911.0093.v1). Neher, D.A.; Barbercheck, M.E. Soil microarthropods and soil health: Intersection of decomposition and pest suppression. Preprints 2019, 2019110093 (doi: 10.20944/preprints201911.0093.v1).

Abstract

Two desirable functions of healthy soil are nutrient cycling and pest suppression. We review recent literature on the contributions of soil microarthropods to soil health through their intersecting roles in decomposition and nutrient cycling and direct and indirect suppression of plant pests. Microarthropods can impact soil and plant health directly by feeding on pest organisms or serving as alternate prey for larger predatory arthropods, and indirectly, by mediating the ability of crop plants to resist or tolerate insect pests and diseases through interactions with the decomposition food web in support of plant nutrition. Soil fauna, including microarthropods, are key regulators of decomposition at local scales but their role at larger scales is unresolved. Future research priorities include the incorporation of multi-channel omnivory into food web modeling and understanding the vulnerability of our soil carbon to increased global temperatures.

Subject Areas

microarthropods; decomposition; nutrient mineralization; multi-channel feeding; predation; alternate prey; detrital shunting

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