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Annu Rev Entomol. 1999;44:233-56.

Adaptive strategies of edaphic arthropods.

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Entomology Department, New York State Agricultural Experiment Station, Cornell University, Geneva, New York 14456, USA.


For those arthropod species adapted for living below the soil surface, the soil is a refuge from the biotic and abiotic perturbations existing above ground. Convergent morphological, physiological, and behavioral adaptations of epedaphic, euedaphic, and hemiedaphic arthropods to selective aspects of subterranean existence are examined in light of overlapping ecological niches. The abiotic impact of the soil environment and its relationship to arthropod evolution, radiation, and ecology are discussed as well. Specific areas addressed include the invasion of land by marine arthropods, the impact of morphology on arthropod mobility, osmoregulatory/respiratory systems, and defensive strategies.

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