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Sustainability 2015, 7(8), 10837-10853; doi:10.3390/su70810837

Diversity and Abundance of Soil Animals as Influenced by Long-Term Fertilization in Grey Desert Soil, China

1
Institute of Soil Fertilizer and Agricultural Water Saving, Xinjiang Academy of Agricultural Sciences, Urumqi 830091, China
2
Xinjiang Key Laboratory of Soil and Plant Ecological Processes, College of Grassland and Environmental Sciences, Xinjiang Agricultural University, Urumqi 830052, China
3
Institute of Forestry, Xinjiang Agricultural University, Urumqi 830052, China
4
State Key Laboratory of Desert and Oasis Ecology, Xinjiang Institute of Ecology and Geography, Urumqi 830011, China
*
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Marc A. Rosen
Received: 3 June 2015 / Revised: 29 July 2015 / Accepted: 29 July 2015 / Published: 7 August 2015
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Abstract

The relationship between soil fauna and different fertilizer management practices is of growing concern. The aim of this research was to investigate the response of soil fauna to fertilization regimes, to explore the relationships among the community of soil animals, soil moisture and crop yields. The application of organic fertilizers (i.e., sheep manure or crop residues) increased crop yields and promoted the number of individuals and species of soil fauna owing to the exogenous organic matter that fertilizers provided for the survival and development of soil fauna. Furthermore, the treatments that applied sheep manure (i.e., sheep manure only or nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium and sheep manure plus) were significantly beneficial for increasing crop yields and diversity of soil fauna compared to treatments with crop residues returned (i.e., crop residues returned only or nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium and crop residues returned to the field) (p < 0.05) due to the response of soil fauna to diverse exogenous nutrients and the effect of soil fertility. Therefore, the finding that soil fauna abundance is significantly positively correlated with soil moisture and crop yield may mean the effects of fertilizer applications on soil animals were partly masked by the soil moisture and crop yield. View Full-Text
Keywords: long-term fertilization; soil fauna; crop yield; grey desert soil long-term fertilization; soil fauna; crop yield; grey desert soil
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Jiang, M.; Wang, X.; Liusui, Y.; Sun, X.; Zhao, C.; Liu, H. Diversity and Abundance of Soil Animals as Influenced by Long-Term Fertilization in Grey Desert Soil, China. Sustainability 2015, 7, 10837-10853.

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