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Mapping of earthworm distribution for the British Isles and Eire highlights the under-recording of an ecologically important group

By Daniel Carpenter, Emma Sherlock, David T. Jones, Jim Chiminoides, Thomas Writer, Roy Neilson, Brian Boag, Aidan M. Keith and Paul Eggleton

Abstract

Earthworms are important soil organisms yet we have limited knowledge on the geographical distribution of species. Using data from a variety of sources representing a total of 3,941 locality records we have produced the first distribution maps of earthworm species in the British Isles The maps highlight the paucity of knowledge on this ecologically important group. A systematic approach needs to be taken to bring earthworm species data to a level comparable with other important invertebrate groups such as nematodes and isopods. Through the recent establishment of an earthworm recording scheme, the Earthworm Society of Britain, working with the Biological Records Centre and earthworm researchers across the British Isles, aim to build comprehensive distribution information for future monitoring and research purposes. \u

Topics: Zoology, Ecology and Environment
Year: 2012
DOI identifier: 10.1007/s10531-011-0194-x
OAI identifier: oai:nora.nerc.ac.uk:15995
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