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Effect of cadmium contamination with sewage sludge and phosphate fertiliser amendments on soil enzyme activities, microbial structure and available cadmium

Abstract.

The effect of Cd pollution (50 mg kg–1), with and without sewage sludge (Sw) and PO4 3– fertiliser (P) addition, on soil biochemical activity and available Cd was assessed in a 112-day soil incubation experiment. The availability of Cd decreased with incubation time and was reduced by the Sw and P additions resulting in the following order of treatments: Cd>P+Cd>Sw+Cd. With the exception of urease and N-acetylglucosaminidase activities, all enzyme activities were negatively correlated with available Cd. The total culturable bacterial population was significantly higher with the addition of Sw alone than in the control during the incubation period (P<0.05). The number of fluorescent pseudomonads decreased with time, but was significantly increased by the addition of Sw. The total fungal populations decreased with time in all treatments, whilst the addition of Sw and PO4 3– fertilisers relatively increased the fungal population. Addition of Sw in the presence of Cd increased the fungal populations in relation to the addition of Cd alone. The results support the view that Cd contamination has a large detrimental effect on nutrient cycling and microbial activity and that the effects of Cd are reduced by P and Sw additions.

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Karaca, A., Naseby, D.C. & Lynch, J.M. Effect of cadmium contamination with sewage sludge and phosphate fertiliser amendments on soil enzyme activities, microbial structure and available cadmium. Biol Fertil Soils 35, 428–434 (2002). https://doi.org/10.1007/s00374-002-0490-4

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  • Cadmium Pollution Sewage sludge Phosphate fertiliser Enzyme activity