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Chapter Objectives
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After reading this chapter you should be able to:
  • describe the various environmental conditions found in soils
  • describe the interaction of microorganisms with insects and other soil animals, and explain how these interactions influence nutrient cycling and other processes
  • describe how soil is formed
  • describe the different types of soils and the microorganisms found in them
  • discuss the various types of associations between plants and microorganisms
  • discuss the interactions of microorganisms and plants and their impact on soil nutrients and on the atmosphere
  • discuss organic matter accumulation and decomposition in soils
  • discuss the subsurface biosphere
  • discuss the impact of soil microbes on human health
  • discuss the reasons that soil microbial communities are not well understood

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