HOME >> BIOLOGY >> NEWS
Alien earthworms changing ecology of Northeast forests

KINGSTON, R.I. June 24, 2003 Some forests throughout the Northeast are rapidly changing, but most observers won't notice it unless they take a close look at the soil beneath their feet. That's because the driving force behind the changing forests are earthworms, which play a key role in recycling nutrients in the soil but which may also be altering habitat for plants, salamanders, birds and other wildlife.

Only a few forest stands are known to be affected to date, according to University of Rhode Island soil scientists Josef Grres and Jos Amador, but they say the threat to forests is real. Most of the earthworm species found in the Northeast are not native to the area.

Grres and Amador are evaluating the environmental impact of the common nightcrawler, one of the region's 16 to 20 species of earthworms. While the spread of the worms in Rhode Island has not yet been evaluated, the researchers note that bait cups littering popular fishing spots suggest that local forests may be affected soon.

"These exotic earthworms arrived here either in plant materials imported by European settlers, from fishing bait that escaped, and some that were imported here for use in composting," Grres said. "Any native earthworms that may have been in New England thousands of years ago were crushed by the glaciers."

When earthworms move into a new area, they feed on the organic material on the forest floor and bring it down into their burrows. They feed primarily on the top layer of leaf litter, as well as on the duff the spongy layer of decomposing vegetation beneath the leaf litter.

Grres said that while earthworms do an excellent job of recycling nutrients, "when they eat away the duff layer, all the plant seeds that germinate there, like trillium and mayflowers and wood anemone, may disappear or may not have any place to germinate. Other creatures that live in the duff and forest litter like salamanders and ground-nesting birds may be affected as we
'"/>

Contact: Todd McLeish
tmcleish@uri.edu
401-874-7892
University of Rhode Island
24-Jun-2003


Page: 1 2 3

Related biology news :

1. Alien life forms more likely to be found outside solar system, says Colorado prof.
2. Alien Species Cost U.S. $123 Billion A Year
3. Non-native earthworms may be wiping out rare plants
4. A changing landscape may have dire implications for birds
5. Croatian skeletons reveal changing status of cancer in Europe across the centuries
6. Undisturbed Amazonian forests are changing, say scientists
7. Northern climate, ecosystems driven by cycles of changing sunlight
8. Fast changing gene drives species split
9. Gene duplication adapts to changing environment
10. View of forest insects changing from pests to partners
11. Initiative considers changing face of biology

Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
TAG: Alien earthworms changing ecology Northeast forests

(Date:10/15/2014)... , Oct. 15, 2014 Sandata Technologies, ... home and community-based care, today announced it released ... Sandata,s Santrax® Electronic Visit Verification™ Solution (EVV™)  for ... a home health company founded in 1996 and ... . The study details the ...
(Date:10/15/2014)... Researchers have linked increased resistance to bacterial pneumonia in ... sex hormone estrogen. , Females are naturally more resistant ... of scientists has shown that increased resistance to bacterial ... nitric oxide synthase 3 (NOS3). They also show that ... the female sex hormone estrogen. , The team, lead ...
(Date:10/14/2014)... Research shows SIRT6—a protein known to inhibit the ... of skin cancers by turning on an enzyme that ... , Previously considered protective, SIRT6 is part of a ... genomic stability and prevent some of the genetic flaws ... can lead to cancer. This study, in the journal,s ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):Sandata Announces Case Study with Quality Care Services, Inc. 2Two-faced gene: SIRT6 prevents some cancers but promotes sun-induced skin cancer 2
(Date:10/18/2014)... The report "1,6-Hexanediol Market by ... to 2019", analyzes the global market on the ... the industry details such as the key drivers, ... regions. , Browse 81 Market Data Tables and ... TOC on “1,6-Hexanediol Market by Application and by ...
(Date:10/18/2014)... October 18, 2014 The Asia-Pacific hardware ... market in Asia-Pacific with analysis and forecast of revenue. ... is expected to reach $51,362.6 million by 2018, at ... Browse through the TOC of the Asia-Pacific hardware encryption ... analysis provided. This also provides a glimpse of the ...
(Date:10/18/2014)... 18, 2014 The Asian Electronic Medical Record ... Asian with analysis and forecast of revenue. The electronic medical ... to $2,328.0 million by 2018, at a CAGR of 9.4% ... the Asian Electronic Medical Record (EMR) market, to get an ... glimpse of the segmentation of the market in the same ...
(Date:10/18/2014)... According to a new market research report “Hydraulic Fracturing ... & Forecasts up till 2017”, hydraulic fracturing market will ... is expected to increase from $40 billion in 2012 ... the same period. North America is expected to lead ... hydraulic horse power supplied by the year 2011. , ...
Breaking Biology Technology:1,6-Hexanediol Market Projected to Reach $916.1 Million at a CAGR of 8.3% by 2019 – Report by MarketsandMarkets 21,6-Hexanediol Market Projected to Reach $916.1 Million at a CAGR of 8.3% by 2019 – Report by MarketsandMarkets 31,6-Hexanediol Market Projected to Reach $916.1 Million at a CAGR of 8.3% by 2019 – Report by MarketsandMarkets 41,6-Hexanediol Market Projected to Reach $916.1 Million at a CAGR of 8.3% by 2019 – Report by MarketsandMarkets 5The Asia-Pacific hardware encryption display market is expected to reach $51,362.6 million by 2018 - New Report by MicroMarket Monitor 2The Asia-Pacific hardware encryption display market is expected to reach $51,362.6 million by 2018 - New Report by MicroMarket Monitor 3The Asian Electronic Medical Record (EMR) market is estimated to grow to $2,328.0 million by 2018 - New Report by MicroMarket Monitor 2The Asian Electronic Medical Record (EMR) market is estimated to grow to $2,328.0 million by 2018 - New Report by MicroMarket Monitor 3The Asian Electronic Medical Record (EMR) market is estimated to grow to $2,328.0 million by 2018 - New Report by MicroMarket Monitor 4The Asian Electronic Medical Record (EMR) market is estimated to grow to $2,328.0 million by 2018 - New Report by MicroMarket Monitor 5Hydraulic Fracturing Market Projected To Reach $64 Billion by 2017 - New Report by MarketsandMarkets 2Hydraulic Fracturing Market Projected To Reach $64 Billion by 2017 - New Report by MarketsandMarkets 3Hydraulic Fracturing Market Projected To Reach $64 Billion by 2017 - New Report by MarketsandMarkets 4
Cached News: