College of Agricultural SciencesCollege of Agricultural Sciences

Soils and Biodiversity

Soil biodiversity reflects the mix of living organisms in the soil. These organisms interact with one another and with plants and small animals forming a web of biological activity. Soil is by far the most biologically diverse part of Earth and these organisms improve the entry and storage of water, resistance to erosion, plant nutrition, and break down of organic matter. A wide variety of organisms provides checks and balances to the soil food web through population control, mobility, and survival from season to season. This consortium will provide a global assessment of the range and variability of biodiversity found in soils.


Soil’s Hidden Secrets

Shocking discoveries from the underground may shake up climate science

Scientists around the world are closing in on some dirty truths about carbon emissions and climate change. Read more at

From Tropics to Poles: Study Reveals Diversity of Life in Soils

Microscopic animals that live in soils are as diverse in the tropical forests of Costa Rica as they are in the arid grasslands of Kenya, or the tundra and boreal forests of Alaska and Sweden.

That conclusion is found in research results published today in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. Read more from the National Science Foundation


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