Tuesday, 7 October 2008: 9:15 AM
George R. Brown Convention Center, 370C
A detailed study was conducted to understand the ecosystem-scale controls on soil microbial composition of the selected tree islands of the
Everglades. Cultural, biogeochemical, and molecular approaches were used for quantitative determination of microbial community structure. and function. Selected tree islands were not significantly different from each other. However, there was significant difference between ecosystems for per cent total carbon (%TC), moisture content, microbial counts (p ≤ 0.001) and pH (p ≤ 0.05) at both surface and subsurface. Molecular analysis indicated high relative ratio of 340-361 bp in hammocks compared to bayheads and bayhead-swamps. Diversity indices showed hammocks are rich and diverse in microbial populations than bayheads and bayhead-swamps. Diversity in tree island ecosystems may be driven by %TC and %TP under the influence of moisture. Future studies on functional diversity and establishing phylogenetic relationship would greatly enhance the understanding of microbial community interactions at ecosystem levels.