Last outcomes by NHM


Last outcomes by NHM

Here there are the last outcomes by Natural History Museum.

Soil biodiversity in horticultural agricultura

A meta-analysis combines the wealth of scientific studies already published. It begins with a search for studies, the terms were carefully chosen to retrieve relevant papers and minimise bias. These articles are then checked for suitability and if they pass data is extracted from them for statistical analysis. This flowchart shows the selection process, filtering down from 125,116 studies to 79.

Some of the most useful studies looked at either multiple groups of arthropods, multiple land-use types, or both, such as Sáenz-Romo et al. (2019) https://doi.org/10.1016/j.agee.2019.106571 and Pérez-Bote and Romero (2012) https://doi.org/10.5424/sjar/2012101-202-11

Final analysis of the soil bioinoculation experiment

Nastasia Baudin writes from the Natural History Museum, London: “The final analysis of the soil bio-inoculation experiment is on its way. We inoculated agricultural soils with microorganisms that are supposed to increase crop efficiency. We have extracted the DNA from the soils to investigate how the natural microbial community in the soil and the inoculated microorganisms developed in our laboratory experiments. In this picture, DNA from the soils can be seen on the gel. The bands displaced up indicate sufficient DNA copies to continue the process (blue circles). Only a few extra steps before DNA samples can be sequenced. Can’t wait to find out what the microbial community looks like.”

At the Natural History Museum in London we are testing whether microbial inoculants used to improve soil fertility facilitate mineral dissolution to obtain nutrients. X-ray diffraction can measure mineral dissolution. Iron and phosphorous are important nutrients. In the image are the results for iron phosphate where control experiments (with no bioinoculant, grey circles) are compared to the results with three microorganisms (orange, blue and yellow dots), for agricultural soils from four countries participating in the Excalibur project. Only the soil from Austria shows a consistent dissolution (loss) above the control experiments. Clearly, the nature of the soil affects the efficacy of the bioinoculants.

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