Pedodiversity and global soil patterns at coarse scales (with Discussion)



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Alba Alonso, Saturnino de and Ibáñez Martí, Juan José and Lobo Aleu, Agustín and Zucarello, V. (1998) Pedodiversity and global soil patterns at coarse scales (with Discussion). Geoderma, 83 . pp. 171-192. ISSN 0016-7061

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Several algorithms for analyzing the diversity of the world pedosphere are reviewed and
employed. Special emphasis has been laid on indices based on the Theory of Information. We
study the diversity and distribution of major soil groups by continents and climatic zones on the
basis of data compiled by the FAO at the scale I : 5,000,OOO. Major soil group-distribution model
relationships on a world level seem to follow more equitable patterns than those established for
biocenoses and soil patterns at fine scales. At a continental level, the pedosphere’s diversity is
characterized by similarities rather than differences. Differences in diversity by climatic zones are
more marked. Evenness (Pielou’s index) and diversity (Shannon’s index) tend to be greater in the
climatic zones of intermediate latitudes than in circumequatorial and circumboreal latitudes. The
climatic zones closest to the Poles could be the planet’s most uniform soil patterns at small scales.
Mountain areas, in general, achieve the highest pedorichness and lowest values of diversity.
Global soil pattern distribution was also analyzed using multivariate techniques. At a continental
level, it is possible for the structure of the global pedosphere to be determined by the continent’s
geological, tectonic and climatic histories. Soil patterns of different climatic zones are linked in a
very well-defined latitudinal gradient.

Item Type:Article
Uncontrolled Keywords:Pedodiversity; Global distribution; Climate; Plate tectonics
Subjects:Sciences > Geology > Geodynamics
ID Code:25701
Deposited On:04 Jun 2014 12:41
Last Modified:09 Jun 2014 09:10

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