Crusts: biological

Edited by: Scott A. Elias



Biological soil crusts, a community of cyanobacteria, lichens, mosses, and fungi, are an essential part of dryland ecosystems. They are critical in the stabilization of soils, protecting them from wind and water erosion. Similarly, these soil surface communities also stabilized soils on early Earth, allowing vascular plants to establish. They contribute nitrogen and carbon to otherwise relatively infertile dryland soils, and have a strong influence on hydrologic cycles. Their presence can also influence vascular plant establishment and nutrition.

Additional publication details

Publication type Book chapter
Publication Subtype Book Chapter
Title Crusts: biological
DOI 10.1016/B978-0-12-409548-9.05131-9
Year Published 2013
Language English
Publisher Elsevier
Contributing office(s) Southwest Biological Science Center
Larger Work Type Book
Larger Work Subtype Other Government Series
Larger Work Title Reference Module in Earth Systems and Environmental Sciences
Online Only (Y/N) Y