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Howard Ferris Department of Nematology University of California, Davis November, 2010 Stewardship of Soil Ecosystem Services.

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Presentation on theme: "Howard Ferris Department of Nematology University of California, Davis November, 2010 Stewardship of Soil Ecosystem Services."— Presentation transcript:

1 Howard Ferris Department of Nematology University of California, Davis November, 2010 Stewardship of Soil Ecosystem Services

2 CO 2 carbohydrates and proteins carbohydrates and amino acids bacteria nematodes fungi CO 2 NH 3 NO 3 protozoa nematodes arthropods fungi arthropods nematodes NH 3 other organisms NH 3 CO 2 CNCN Carbon and energy transfer Carbon is respired by all organisms in the food web The amounts of Carbon and Energy available limit the size and activity of the web The soil ecosystem is strongly affected by type and frequency of Carbon and Energy input

3 Infrequent (Punctuated) Resource Input Carbon and Energy Subsidy Effects Prey resources Predators

4 Frequent (Continuous) Resource Input Carbon and Energy Subsidy Effects Prey resources Predators

5 Consistent N-yield over 75 years without input N-yield similar to that of high input wheat Structure Index Basal Index From Glover et al., 2010 Land-use change in Kansas Resource Inputs: Bottom up effects on Soil Ecosystem Structure and Function Community Ecology

6 Individual species services Aggregate ecosystem services Soil Ecosystem Functions - metabolic and behavioral activities of organisms that impact the biotic or abiotic components of the ecosystem Feeding: Ingestion, assimilation, defecation and excretion Behavior: Movement, activity, migration Functions may be classified, subjectively, as Services, Disservices (or Neutral) Disservices: Damage plants of agricultural or ornamental significance Injure humans and vertebrate animals Services: Sequester and redistribute minerals Mineralize organic molecules Accelerate turnover Regulate and suppress pests Alter substrate to provide access to other organisms Redistribute organisms in space Biodegrade toxins Reduce soil erosion Increase agricultural production

7 Provide ServicesProvide Disservices Management tradeoffs? Management of Soil Organisms…. to enhance services and reduce disservices

8 Nematode Sensitivity to Mineral Fertilizer Tenuta and Ferris, 2004 Soil Ecosystem – environmental effects on Structure

9 Fungi exploit nematodes through: 1. traps and networks that remain attached to the hyphae. 2. spores that detach from hyphae Feeding and Redistributing Organisms Some Ecosystem Functions

10 Distribution of organisms to new resources bacteria and bacterivore nematodes 0 nematodes Fu et al Behavioral Ecology 5 nematodes20 nematodes

11 Exploiting Ecosystem Services: The N-Mineralization Service of Bacterivore Nematodes

12 T0T0 M0M0 Cover crop Irrigation temperature moisture activity Taking it to the field…… Soil Ecosystem Management – an experiment Ferris et al., 2004

13 Nitrogen mineralization A diverse functional guild of bacterivores supports….

14 Density-dependent predation Predator: Prey Ratio Sánchez-Moreno and Ferris, 2007 Another Ecosystem Service: Regulation of Opportunistic Species

15 Generalist and Specialist Predators Amplifiable Prey Target Prey Predators and prey

16 Soil Ecosystem Complexity and the Regulation Function Management practices in industrialized agriculture result in: Soil ecosystem simplification Reduction in higher trophic levels Costa Rica, 2008 We tested nematode predator:prey hypotheses with data from banana plantations in four Central American countries……….

17 Ferris, Pocasangre, et al., subm. Banana Plantations - Panama The relationships are fuzzy because…………….

18 Organic Matter Microbial Biomass Amplifiable Prey Predator Nematodes Nematophagous fungi + Target Prey AB Plant Roots Root Associate Nematodes + + Other Predators B Protozoa + Other Prey+ A E6 E1 E2 E3 E4 E5 B Trophic cascades: amplifiable and target prey – the expanded model - B + + Rhizosphere bacteria E7 -

19 Enhancing Amplifiable Prey Target Prey: the ring nematode

20 Environmental heterogeneity Zones and Gradients: texture structure temperature water O 2 CO 2 NO 3 NH 4 minerals Soil Ecosystem – environmental factors affecting Structure Separate metacommunities?

21 Predator-prey Connectance Organic Bananas and Cover Crop – Costa Rica

22 Winter cover crop – bell beans California, 2006 No-till soybeans, Brazil, 2006 Soil fertility Organic matter Food web activity Soil structure Fossil fuel reduction Habitat conservation Food web activity Soil structure Feeding the Amplifiable Prey

23 Plant-feeding nematodes Fungus-feeding nematodes Bacteria-feeding nematodes Generalist predator nematodes Specialist predator nematodes Protozoa-feeding nematodes Nematodes at each trophic level Rhabditidae Panagrolaimidae etc. Short lifecycle Small/ Mod. body size High fecundity Small eggs Dauer stages Wide amplitude Opportunists Disturbed conditions Aporcelaimidae Nygolaimidae etc. Long lifecycle Large body size Low fecundity Large eggs Stress intolerant Narrow amplitude Undisturbed conditions Enrichment Indicators Structure Indicators Cephalobidae Aphelenchidae, etc. Moderate lifecycle Small body size Stress tolerant Feeding adaptations Present in all soils Basal Fauna

24 Ba 2 Fu 2 Ba 1 Ba 3 Fu 3 Ca 3 Ba 4 Fu 4 Ca 4 Om 4 Ba 5 Fu 5 Ca 5 Om 5 Enriched Structured Basal condition Structure trajectory Enrichment trajectory omnivores carnivores fungivores bacterivores fungivores bacterivores fungivores bacterivores Nematode Faunal Profiles Enrichment index 100 (w1.cp1 + w2.Fu2) / (w1.cp1 + w2.cp2 ) Structure Index = 100 wi.cpi / (wi.cpi + w2.cp2 ) for i = 3-5 Ferris et al., 2001 and the Metabolic Footprint

25 Emergent Themes in Soil Ecosystem Stewardship: 1. Provide adequate and continuous resource supply to support desired functions 2. Preserve favorable conditions for component systems 3. Engineer co-location or range overlap of interacting guilds 4. Assess magnitude of services based on faunal analysis and metabolic footprints of functional components


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