Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
Agriculture, Forestry, Horticulture, Fishery, Domestic Science, Nutrition
Abstract An outdoor study was undertaken using polyethylene containers to assess the suitability of different organic residues, soybean straw (Glycine max L. Merril.), wheat straw (Triticum aestivum L.), maize stover (Zea mays L.), chickpea straw (citer arietinum L.) and city garbage, as food for the tropical epigeic earthwormPerionyx excavatus, and to assess the influence of this earthworm on the decomposition of these materials. Maize stover was found to be the most suitable of the food materials used. Population growth ofP. excavatus was enhanced by addition of these organic materials in the temperature range 24°-30°C, while the population was adversely affected above 30°C in a vermiculture system. Addition of earthworms accelerated the breakdown of residues, which ultimately resulted in a lowering of the C:N ratio, water-soluble carbon and carbohydrates, and increased ash percentage and cation exchange capacity compared with their respective controls.
Type of Medium: