Soil organisms (microfauna, macrofauna and microflora) have an important role in soil fertility. Soil fertility control activities as indicated by fixing some physical soil properties include (1) the soil structure, (2) the texture and consistency of the ground, (3) retention and movement of water, and (4) the exchange of gases. Chemically there were also changes in soil properties include (1) of nutrient content is available, (2) increasing the cation exchange capacity, (3) pH and organic C content.
Consider the following Figure 1:35. This image shows the different types of macrofauna that live in the soil. What and how the role of macrofauna in the soil associated with the fertility of the soil?
Figure 1:35. Different Types of macrofauna
Changes in soil properties is a result macrofauna activity in affecting the process (1) humification and mineralization of soil organic matter, (2) mixing and stirring the soil, (3) the formation of macropores and total pore. Macrofauna as a mixer and agitator ground, will spur changes in the original soil structure is compact and massive become textured soil crusts. Stirring ground the bottom to the top (bioturbation) caused translocation of fine soil fraction size from the bottom to the surface of the ground.
In addition, the former in its path will form burrows (holes channels), which is useful as an exchange of air traffic and the movement of water infiltration. The ability of microbes as pembenah properties of soils, suggesting that the presence of macrofauna in the soil is needed to ensure the creation of a comfortable living environment for plants and microbes that are growing.
The existence of macrofauna in the soil accelerate the decomposition of organic matter. Fresh organic material is the feed for macrofauna. Through digestion of degradation of organic material, and partial results released decoder back to the ground in the form of feces they produce. Dirt macrofauna generally contain organic C and available element is higher than the surrounding soil. However, the chemical composition of dirt macrofauna very diverse, depending on the type of makrofaunanya, the type and amount of feed as well as the type of soil.
Today the study of the benefits of macrofauna as pembenah soil fertility is not as intensive as in microbes. There are only a few macrofauna which has gained serious attention. In wet climates assessment of the macrofauna was centered on earthworms, because the worms of the land has a dominant macrofauna in that environment. Notwithstanding the population density, species composition and properties of worm dung very influenced by the level of soil moisture, soil types and kinds of vegetation.
In dry climates, macrofauna which has received much attention is the termite, which is the dominant macrofauna at the venue. Termite activity in improving the properties of the soil is very dependent on the climate, soil type, type of crop and land use.