Land use patterns can change the structure of soil bacterial communities. However, there are few studies on the effects of land use patterns coupled with soil depth on soil bacterial communities in the karst graben basin of Yunnan province, China. Consequently, to reveal the structure of the soil bacterial community at different soil depths across land use changes in the graben basins of the Yunnan plateau, the relationship between soil bacterial communities and soil physicochemical properties was investigated for a given area containing woodland, shrubland, and grassland in Yunnan province by using next-generation sequencing technologies coupled with soil physicochemical analysis. Our results indicated that the total phosphorus (TP), available potassium (AK), exchangeable magnesium (E-Mg), and electrical conductivity (EC) in the grassland were significantly higher than those in the woodland and shrubland, yet the total nitrogen (TN) and soil organic carbon (SOC) in the woodland were higher than those in the shrubland and grassland. Proteobacteria
were the dominant bacteria, and their relative abundances were different in the three land use types. SOC, TN, and AK were the most important factors affecting soil bacterial communities. Land use exerts strong effects on the soil bacterial community structure in the soil’s surface layer, and the effects of land use attenuation decrease with soil depth. The nutrient content of the soil surface layer was higher than that of the deep layer, which was more suitable for the survival and reproduction of bacteria in the surface layer.
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