Mapping world’s soil worms

  1. According to the global analysis of nematodes published in Nature,there are about 57 billion nematodes for every human being on Earth.
  2. The researchers have said that Sub-Arctic regions have the highest abundance of nematodes followed by temperate regions and tropical regions.
  3. Nematodes prefers colder region as soil organic matter content is the key driver for nematode abundance.
  4. Further,the low temperature and high moisture in the sub-Arctic regions reduces the decomposition rate of organic matter.This leads to accumulation of organic matter and the nematodes happily thrive on them. 
  5. Nematodes are worm shaped nearly microscopic animals,many of which are virtually invisible to the unaided eye when they are in the soil or within plant material.
  6. These are roundworms and their size can vary from a tiny 0.2 millimetre to a few metres.They are responsible for around 2.2% of the total carbon emission from soils.
  7. The nematodes play a crucial role in the environment as they are responsible for production of ammonia of the soil and also a bioindicator of soil ecosystem’s health.