Keywords: urban?rural gradient, heavy metals, soil nematodes, urbanisation, nematode communities, China, nematode distribution, soil contamination, environmental pollution, bioindicators
Nematode community structure as bioindicator of soil heavy metal pollution along an urban?rural gradient in southern Shenyang, China
Effects of heavy metals caused by urbanisation on soil nematode communities were investigated along an urban?suburban?rural gradient in southern Shenyang, China. The numbers of total nematodes increased significantly along the urban?rural gradient. Similar trends were observed in the values of Structure Index (SI), with lower values found in urban site and higher in the rural site. Generic richness and SI were sensitive indicators for assessing the effect of heavy metals on soil nematode communities. The Canonical Correspondence Analysis (CCA) indicated that copper concentration and Cation Exchange Capacity (CEC) were most important environmental parameters that influenced nematode distribution.