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The effects of two different biochars on earthworm survival and microbial carbon levels

Permanent URL:
http://handle.nal.usda.gov/10113/47661
File:
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Abstract:
Biochar is a material created from the thermoconversion of biomass through pyrolysis for the production of bio-energy. The use of biochar as a soil amendment has been proposed as a means to sequester carbon, thus offsetting the release of CO2. Management strategies for the use of biochar as a soil amendment are still in development, and the effect of adding biochar to soil on soil organisms, in particular earthworms, is virtually unknown. We studied the effect of two different biochars, pine chip biochar and poultry litter biochar, on earthworm growth and survival in incubated mesosocoms in two different field soils, as well as the effect of the two biochars and earthworms on soil microbial carbon biomass. The poultry litter char adversely affected earthworm survival, but resulted in higher levels of microbial carbon, especially at the higher rates of application. The pine char had a higher survival rate, and did not show any change in the microbial carbon levels.
Author(s):
Liesch, Mandy , Weyers, Sharon , Gaskin, Julia , Das, K.C.
Subject(s):
earthworms , mortality , charcoal , soil microorganisms , microbial activity , wood chips , poultry manure , Eisenia fetida , soil , biomass , carbon
Format:
p. 67-70.
Note:
Includes references
Language:
English
Publisher:
[Brisbane, Qld. : The Congress], 2010.
Year:
2010
Collection:
Journal Articles, USDA Authors, Peer-Reviewed
Rights:
Works produced by employees of the U.S. Government as part of their official duties are not copyrighted within the U.S. The content of this document is not copyrighted.