An alternative to soil taxonomy for describing key soil characteristics
  • 【摘要】

    We are pleased to see the letter by Schimel and Chadwick (Front Ecol Environ 2013; 11[8]: 405–06), highlighting the importance of soil characterization in ecological and biogeochemical research and ex... 展开>>We are pleased to see the letter by Schimel and Chadwick (Front Ecol Environ 2013; 11[8]: 405–06), highlighting the importance of soil characterization in ecological and biogeochemical research and explaining the value of soil taxonomy, and we agree with the authors that reporting soil taxonomic classification would greatly increase the interpretive value of many studies. However, in our extensive work with land managers and scientists, we have found that taxonomic classifications are not particularly useful because they are poorly understood. For those unfamiliar with soil taxonomy, deconstructing the meaning of a classification is not a simple task. Furthermore, because the US system of soil taxonomy is not applied universally, its utility as a means for effectively describing soil characteristics to readers in other countries is limited. Finally, and most importantly, even at the finest level of soil classification there are often large within-taxa variations in critical properties that can determine ecosystem responses to drivers such as climate and land-use change. For example, an argillic horizon can have anywhere from 4% to >40% clay while a calcic horizon can range from 5% to >30% calcium carbonate (Soil Survey Staff 1999). The relative insensitivity of taxonomy to surface soil properties is of particular concern (see Schimel and Chadwick’s WebPanel 1), due to their influence over many critical ecosystem processes such as soil erosion, plant establishment, and infiltration. 收起<<

  • 【作者】

    Duniway, M.C.  Miller, M.E.  Brown, J.  Toevs, G. 

  • 【刊期】

    Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment 2013年10期

  • 【语种】

    eng