PROGRESS IN GEOGRAPHY ›› 2010, Vol. 29 ›› Issue (11): 1350-1359.doi: 10.11820/dlkxjz.2010.11.020

• Original Articles • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Advances in Researches on Soil Microbial Biomass of Grassland Ecosystems and Its Influencing Factors

HE Yating1,2, DONG Yunshe1, QI Yuchun1, XIAO Shengsheng3, LIU Xinchao1,2   

  1. 1. Institute of Geographic Sciences and Natural Resources Research, CAS, Beijing 100101, China;
    2. Graduate University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100049, China;
    3. Jiangxi Provincial Research Institute for Soil andWater Conservation, Nanchang 330029, China
  • Received:2010-03-01 Revised:2010-04-01 Online:2010-11-25 Published:2010-11-25


As one of the main terrestrial ecosystems, grassland ecosystem has suffered the extensive effects from human activity and global change. These effects not only have an influence on aboveground process such as plant growth and plant community dynamics, but also exert a profound influence on multiple belowground processes simultaneously. Therefore, soil microorganism may be a good indicator to understand the response of the aforementioned belowground biological and biogeochemical processes to the changes of outside disturbances. Soil microbial biomass is an important parameter to character the soil microbe activity and size. Meanwhile, it is also the most active component of the soil organic carbon pool, and plays an important role in indicating the minute changes in soil system and is of great significance in the research of soil bio-chemical processes. Here the effects of natural factors (soil temperature, soil moisture and soil pH), human disturbances (grazing, grassland reclamation and fertilization) and global changes (elevated CO2 and global warming) on soil microbial biomass of grassland ecosystem are presented. So far, the researches about the effects of natural factors and external disturbance on soil microbial biomass still have a lot of uncertainties, so long-term field studies, multiple factors controlled experimentation and nitrogen input studies should be strengthened in the future studies. Besides, new technologies and methods to determine soil microbial biomass are also expected to be developed.

Key words: global change, grassland ecosystem, influencing factors, soil microbial biomass