The effect of urea on epigeic earthworm species (Eisenia foetida)




Long W, Ansari A, Seecharran D. 2017. The effect of urea on epigeic earthworm species (Eisenia foetida). Cell Biol Dev 1: 46-50. The use of chemical fertilizers in intensive agriculture has no doubt increased crop production but it has resulted in adverse effect on soil properties over a long period of time. The effects are clearly seen in the soil environment including the soil organisms living in that ecosystem. This study was conducted to determine effects of Urea on epigeic earthworm species (Eisenia foetida) in clay soil. A total of five doses of Urea were used i.e 50 mg/kg, 100 mg/kg, 150 mg/kg, 200 mg/kg and 250mg. They were labelled as T1, T2, T3, T4, and T5, respectively. A control group was also set up and the treatment groups were replicated three times. The results indicated that the addition of urea affected the soil chemical properties in treatments inoculated with earthworms (Eisenia foetida). The adult earthworm population was 70% in control when compared to different treatment dosage of Urea 50 mg/kg (T1)-85%, 100 mg/kg (T2)-66.67%, 150 mg/kg (T3)- 68.34%, 200 mg/kg (T4)- 86.67% and 250 mg/kg (T5)- 51.67%. The percentage mortality minimum in treatment T4 and T1 whereas it was maximum in treatment T5 (48%). 250 mg/kg was the most toxic dose of Urea in the soil inoculated with earthworms. The results were significant at p=0.05.