, Volume 82, Issue 3, pp 414–416

Alteration of earthworm community biomass by the alien Myrica faya in Hawai'i

  • G. H. Aplet
Original Papers

DOI: 10.1007/BF00317491

Cite this article as:
Aplet, G.H. Oecologia (1990) 82: 414. doi:10.1007/BF00317491


Populations of exotic earthworms responded positively to the presence of the nitrogen-fixing tree, Myrica faya, which is currently invading early succesional habitats in Hawaii Volcanoes National Park. Earthworm biomass in one high-density stand of Myrica was over three times the levels in nearby submontane forest and rainforest. Comparisons of earthworm populations under pairs of Myrica and the dominant native tree, Metrosideros polymorpha, showed biomass levels to be elevated from over two- to almost eightfold under the exotic tree. The increased rate of burial of nitrogenrich litter by earthworms can alter the rate of nitrogen accretion and cycling in these ecosystems.

Key words

Biological invasionEarthwormsHawai'iNitrogen dynamics

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1990

Authors and Affiliations

  • G. H. Aplet
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Biological SciencesStanfordUSA
  2. 2.Department of Forest and Wood SciencesColorado State UniversityFort CollinsUSA