Who live in the soil? What is their role there? How do they interact with each other? How do management and natural disturbances affect soil organisms?
These are questions that the Soil Ecology Workgroup at the University of Tartu is investigating. Our special focus is on fungi, including mycorrhizal fungi, but also bacteria, greenhouse gases and agricultural land-use. We are interested in patterns of soil biodiversity and its variation in natural systems such as grasslands and forests, and in human-influenced systems such as arable fields and disturbed areas. We connect basic science with practice and create evidence-based management guidelines to help maintain and restore soil biodiversity.
The soil is alive and the soil biota within it is what keeps the soil, plants and entire ecosystems functioning.