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Standard methods for the assessment of structural and functional diversity of soil organisms

Critical review: Standard methods for the assessment of structural and functional diversity of soil organisms

The lack of standardised methods to study soil organisms prevents comparisons across datasets and hampers the development of new global and regional experiments and assessments. Standardised methods are also needed to evaluate the impact of anthropogenic stressors, such as chemicals, on soil organism communities in the regulatory context. The objective of this critical review is […]

Effects of insecticides on survival and reproduction of microarthropods in African and European soils

New publication: Effects of insecticides on survival and reproduction of microarthropods in African and European soils

In many parts of Africa, pesticides are used indiscriminately. Yet, ecotoxicological data relevant for the protection of soil organisms have usually been obtained under temperate conditions. In order to assess the effects of three commonly used insecticides (deltamethrin, dimethoate, chlorpyrifos) on microarthropods in African soils, uncontaminated natural soils were collected from Nigeria and Tunisia. In […]

Review of the ecotoxicity of boric acid in standard laboratory tests with plants and soil organisms

To verify the sensitivity of ecotoxicological tests, reference substances with known toxicity are regularly tested. Ideally, such substances lack specificity in their mode action, are bioavailable and readily attainable, and their chemical characterisation is cost-effective. Boric acid satisfies these criteria, but has – due to reproductive effects in humans – most recently been characterised as […]

Development of a classification and assessment concept based on biodiversity of water and soil organisms regarding the effects of climate change and anthropogenic stressors

In July 2008, a new interdisciplinary research centre was founded in Frankfurt am Main (Germany) within the framework of the LOEWE Programme, a State Government of Hesse initiative for the development of scientific and economic excellence. The mission of the new centre (BiK-F) is to carry out internationally outstanding research on the interactions of organismic […]