The EU's Common Agricultural Policy (CAP 2014-2020) on soil management points to the combination of sustainable food production with environmental protection, reduction of CO2 emissions, and safeguarding of soil biodiversity. In this study, three farms (in the Emilia-Romagna region), managed with both conventional and conservation practices (the last ones with and without sub-irrigation systems), were monitored from 2014 to 2017 to highlight the impact of different crops and soil managements on soil arthropods, in terms of abundance, composition, and soil biological quality (applying QBS-ar index). To do this, linear mixed models were performed, whereas arthropods assemblages were studied through PERMANOVA and SIMPER analysis. Soil communities varied among farms, although most differences were found among crops depending on management practices. Nonetheless, conservation systems and a wider reduction in anthropogenic practices provided better conditions for soil fauna, enhancing QBS-ar. Moreover, arthropod groups responded to soil practices differently, highlighting their sensitivity to agricultural management. Community assemblages in corn and wheat differed between managements, mainly due to Acari and Collembola, respectively. In conservation management, wheat showed the overall greatest abundance of arthropods, owing to the great number of Acari, Collembola, and Hymenoptera, while the number of arthropod groups were generally higher in crop residues of forage.
Soil arthropod responses in agroecosystem: Implications of different management and cropping systems / Menta, C.; Conti, F. D.; Fondon, C. L.; Staffilani, F.; Remelli, S.. - In: AGRONOMY. - ISSN 2073-4395. - 10:7(2020), p. 982. [10.3390/agronomy10070982]