Explaining how ecosystems function across variable landscapes will require knowledge of biodiversity patterns. In particular, biodiversity studies of soils and sediments will help in understanding the linkages between ecosystem processes in both of these habitats (Freckman et al. 1997). Soils and sediments are domains for ecosystem processes such as decomposition and trace gas exchange. There are few studies, however, that have compared abundance and diversity of organisms in adjacent soils and sediments (Freckman et al. 1997). The goal of this study was to increase understanding of how the biotic communities involved in ecosystem processes are organized within an important feature of the Antarctic dry valley landscape—a stream channel and the soils and sediments surrounding it.

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Copyright © 2005 National Science Foundation. This article first appeared in Antarctic Journal of the United States 33 (2005): 13-16.

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