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Levels of biogenic-abiogenic interaction and structural organization of soils and soil-like bodies in Antarctica

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Pedogenic processes of transformation and accumulation of organogenic matter and its interaction with the mineral matrix of the soils are very poor-expressed in Antarctica. Very often, these processes show up in a very special ways that can rarely be observed in the well-studied soils of moderate latitudes and even in the northern polar environments. The majority of the Antarctic soils do not develop well-expressed uppermost organomineral horizons. Mostly they are presented with the poorly aggregated mix of mosses’ and lichens’ detritus with the coarse-textured debris and rarely show macromorphological evidences of biogenic-abiogenic interaction. Using of state-of-the-art modern methods of soil science (scanning electron microscopy, micro- and mesomorphological analysis etc.) along with the regular methods of morphological analysis of soil profiles and spatial analysis of the soil cover allow distinguishing different levels of the structural organization of soils in the Antarctic region. The fine earth adhesion, forming of the organomineral coatings and films, deep alteration of primary minerals and ornithogenic impact on the soil material and profile structure is evident at all the studied levels of soil organization. Their manifestation degree rises from the continental Antarctica to the Subantarctic regions and from the soil-like bodies with no or very poor-expressed vegetation to the soils with relatively well-developed uppermost organo-horizons.




Lupachev, A. V., Gubin, S. V., & Abakumov, E. V. (2020). Levels of biogenic-abiogenic interaction and structural organization of soils and soil-like bodies in Antarctica. In Lecture Notes in Earth System Sciences (pp. 481–500). Springer International Publishing.

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