Hydrobiologia

, Volume 558, Issue 1, pp 119–127 | Cite as

Soil-inhabiting Tardigrade Communities in Forests of Central Japan

Article

Abstract

This study was carried out for the purpose of detecting the relationship between soil-inhabiting tardigrade communities and environmental factors of various forests. Nine forests in the southern part of Kanagawa Prefecture, Central Japan, were selected for this study. Four vegetation types were designated; broadleaved (evergreen/deciduous), coniferous and orchard. In these sites, dry weight of leaf litter, soil pH, soil hardness, soil moisture content and porosity ratio were measured. Wet soil faunal frequencies were also described. The Baermann funnel method was adopted for collecting tardigrades, and DIC microscopy was used for specific identification. To clarify the correlation between environmental variables and tardigrade faunae, multivariate analysis was applied.

The tardigrade fauna occurred as two distinct groups. The first group primarily contained Macrobiotus species. The second group contained the genus Diphascon (e.g. D. nobilei, D. patanei, D. prorsirostre). An exception to this was D. pingue, included in the former. Most of the Diphascon species were concentrated in Nebu (coniferous forest site), while, Macrobiotus species were dominant in other sites. Distinct environmental factors could not be identified, but the nematodal frequency was recognized as the main factor in forming these groups. The uniqueness of Nebu, which does not correspond to large-scaled vegetational classification, was substantiated by statistical data. Nebu’s coniferous forest apparently has created a unique environment for sustaining rare species (Diphascon species). This study concluded that forests should be evaluated not only by the macroscopic factors, such as landscape, but also by the microscopic communities, such as those including the tardigrades.

Keywords

soil-inhabiting tardigrade forest types community ecology CCA 

Preview

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

References

  1. Araki, M., 1999. The method of soil physical analyses using cylindrical core sampler. Forest site research method editorial committee (ed.) Forest Site Research Method. Hakuyusha Publication. Tokyo: 33–36. (in Japanese)Google Scholar
  2. Doncaster, C. C., Hooper, D. J. 1961Nematodes attacked by protozoa and tardigradesNematologica6333335CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Fleeger, J. W., Hummon, W. D. 1975Distribution and abundance of soil Tardigrada in cultivated and uncultivated plots of an old field pasture. Memorie dell’Istituto Italiano di Idrobiologia DottMarco di Marchi3293112Google Scholar
  4. Guidetti, R., Bertolani, R., Nelson, D. R. 1999Ecological and faunistic studies on Tardigrades in leaf litter of beech forestsZoologischer Anzeiger238215223Google Scholar
  5. Hallas, T. E., Yeates, G. W. 1972Tardigrada of the soil and litter of a Danish beech forestPedobiologia12287304Google Scholar
  6. Hutchinson, M. T., Streu, H. T. 1960Tardigrade attacking nematodesNematologica5149CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Ito, M. 1995The classification, distribution and community analysis of soil wet fauna in the main forests of Kanto regionNewsletter of forestry and forest products research instituteJapan583 (in Japanese)Google Scholar
  8. Ito, M. 1999Ecological distribution, abundance and habitat preference of terrestrial tardigrades in various forests on the northern slope of Mt. Fuji, central JapanZoologischer Anzeiger238225234Google Scholar
  9. Ito, M., Abe, W. 2001Micro-distribution of soil inhabiting tardigrades (Tardigrada) in a sub-alpine coniferous forest of JapanZoologischer Anzeiger240403407Google Scholar
  10. Itô, Y., Sato, K. 2002Problems around the indices of species diversity for comparison of different communitiesBiological Science53204220(in Japanese)Google Scholar
  11. Jönsson, K. I. 2003Population density and species composition of moss-living tardigrades in a boreo-nemoral forestEcography26356364Google Scholar
  12. Kathman, R. D., Cross, S. F. 1991Ecological distribution of moss-dwelling tardigrades on Vancouver Island, British Columbia, CanadaCanadian Journal of Zoology69122129Google Scholar
  13. Kitazawa, Y., 1972. Seasonal and yearly changes in the number of soil animals other than Nematoda extracted by the Baermann funnel of the subalpine coniferous forest ecosystem of Mt. Shiga, IBP area, Central Japan. JIBP synthesis, biological productivity of subarctic and temperate ecosystems — the report of 1971 (Showa 46th) I: 177–180. (in Japanese)Google Scholar
  14. Nelson, D. R., 1975. Ecological distribution of tardigrades on Roan Mountain, Tennessee – North Carolina. In Higgins, R. P. (ed.), Proceedings of International Symposium on Tardigrades. Memorie dell’Istituto Italiano di Idrobiologia. Dott. Marco di Marchi Supplemento No. 32: 225–276Google Scholar
  15. ter Braak, C. J. F. & P. Smilauer, 1998. CANOCO Reference Manual and User’s Guide to Canoco for Windows: Software for Canonical Community Ordination (version 4): Microcomputer Power. Ithaca: 15–177Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Soil Ecology Research Group, Faculty of Environment and Information SciencesYokohama National UniversityHodogaya, YokohamaJapan
  2. 2.Yokohama Plant Protection Station, Tokyo BranchTokyoJapan

Personalised recommendations