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Title Species richness and composition of soil bacterial communities in Namibian semiarid savanna soils

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Short title Bacterial diversity in Namibian savanna soils

Author(s) Fösel, B.U.(1); Zul, D.(1,2); Romann, E.(1); Mayer, M.(1); Overmann, J.(1)

Presenting author Overmann, J. (1)

Institution(s) (1) Section Microbiology, Department Biology I, University of Munich, 80638 München, Germany; (2) Dept. Biology, Faculty of Mathematics and Natural Sciences, University of Riau, Kampus Bina Widya Km 12.5 Simpang Baru, Pekanbaru, Indonesia

Keywords Soil Bacteria; Land use; Key species; Bacterial diversity; Diversity change

Abstract The composition of the soil bacterial community in arenosols near the BIOTA Southern Africa observatory Mutompo was determined based on 16S rRNA gene sequence analyses. Nine different groups of typical soil bacteria were assessed by quatitative PCR. Most abundant phyla were Acidobacteria and Actinobacteria representing about 30 % and about 20 % of all bacteria, respectively. Alphaproteobacteria, Bacteroidetes, and Planctomycetes each accounted for below 10%; Betaproteobacteria, Chloroflexi, and Firmicutes represented below 1%. Only the group of Verrucomicrobia strongly varied in abundance between the different soil types. To assess overall bacterial diversity, a clone library from the most active site, a pristine dark loamy soil, was constructed. Although nearly 600 clones were sequenced, coverage reached only 10%. This fact together with an estimated number of nearly 6000 bacterial phylotypes implies an unexpectedly high diversity. In total 14 different bacterial phyla were detected. Besides the phylum Acidobacteria, the Rubrobacteridae-group was identified as a potential group of interest for further studies. While our findings are in line with published data from other arid sandy soils with respect to the dominance of Acidobacteria, our study to the best of our knowledge provides the first estimates for bacterial species richness in subtropical African sandy soils.

Congress Topic Microbiology

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