Soil macrofauna under integrated crop-livestock systems in a Brazilian Cerrado Ferralsol.


Pesquisa Agropecuária Brasileira




Abstract ? The objective of this work was to assess the effects of integrated crop-livestock systems, associated with two tillage and two fertilization regimes, on the abundance and diversity of the soil macrofauna. Four different management systems were studied: continuous pasture (mixed grass); continuous crop; two crop-livestock rotations (crop/pasture and pasture/crop); and native Cerrado as a control. Macrofauna was sampled using a modified Tropical Soil Biology and Fertility method, and all individuals were counted and identified at the morphospecies level for each plot. A total of 194 morphospecies were found, distributed among 30 groups, and the most representative in decreasing order of density were: Isoptera, Coleoptera larvae, Formicidae, Oligochaeta, Coleoptera adult, Diplopoda, Hemiptera, Diptera larvae, Arachnida, Chilopoda, Lepidoptera, Gasteropoda, Blattodea and Orthoptera. Soil management systems and tillage regimes affected the structure of soil macrofauna, and integrated crop-livestock systems, associated with no-tillage, especially with grass/legume species associations, had more favorable conditions for the development of "soil engineers" compared with continuous pasture or arable crops. Soil macrofauna density and diversity, assessed at morphospecies level, are effective data to measure the impact of land use in Cerrado soils.


crop-pasture rotation biodiversity no-tillage soil invertebrate soil quality

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