Earthworm abundance and species composition in abandoned tropical croplands: comparisons of tree plantations and secondary forests.

  • Authors: Gonzalez, G.; Zou, X.; Borges, S.
  • Publication Year: 1996
  • Publication Series: Scientific Journal (JRNL)
  • Source: Pedobiologia. 40:385-391

Abstract

We compared patterns of earthworms abundance and species composition in tree plantation and secondary forest of Puerto Rico. Tree plantations included pine (Pinus caribea Morelet) and mahogany (Swietenia macrophylla King) established in the 1930's; 1960's; and 1970's; secondary forests were naturally regenerated in areas adjacent to these plantations. We found that (1) earthworm density and fresh weight in the secondary forests were twice those in either of the tree plantations, and didn't differ between the plantations, and (2) the exotic earthworm species, Pontoscolex corethrurus Muller, dominated both plantations and the secondary forests, but native earthworm species, Pontoscolex spiralis Borges & Moreno, Estherella montana Gates, and E. gatesi Borges & Moreno, occurred only in the seconedary forests. Our results suggest that naturally regenerated secondary forests are preferable to pine and mahogany plantations for maintaining a high level of earthworm density, fresh weight, and native species.

  • Citation: Gonzalez, G.; Zou, X., and Borges, S. 1996. Earthworm abundance and species composition in abandoned tropical croplands: comparisons of tree plantations and secondary forests. Pedobiologia. 40 :385-391
  • Keywords: Luquillo Experimental forest, Pinus caribaea, Pontoscolex corethrurus, Puerto Rico, restoration, Swietenia macrophylla, Pontoscolex spiralis, Estherella montana, Estherella gatesi
  • Posted Date: July 8, 2008
  • Modified Date: January 20, 2015
  • Print Publications Are No Longer Available

    In an ongoing effort to be fiscally responsible, the Southern Research Station (SRS) will no longer produce and distribute hard copies of our publications. Many SRS publications are available at cost via the Government Printing Office (GPO). Electronic versions of publications may be downloaded, printed, and distributed.

    Publication Notes

    • This article was written and prepared by U.S. Government employees on official time, and is therefore in the public domain.
    • To view this article, download the latest version of Adobe Acrobat Reader.