The aim of the study was to compare the feeding activity of soil fauna in seven temperate forests with the application of the bait-lamina method. Seven types of temperate forests located throughout Poland (East-Central Europe) were tested, ranging from dry pine forest with a typical poor quality soil to eutrophic riparian fresh deciduous forest. Each forest type was represented by five stands and all stands altogether represented natural gradient of soil fertility, texture and vegetation diversity. Despite clear diversification between the studied forest types according to a range of soil physicochemical properties and vegetation characteristics in addition to applying recommended measurement conditions for the method, we determined that the feeding activity of soil fauna did not differ between forest types. The activity of soil fauna did not depend on site botanical characteristics or any soil physical or chemical features, indicating that the bait lamina method was useless in measuring the feeding activity of soil fauna in temperate forest soils. Differences in the feeding activity of soil fauna might result from other environmental factors that influence soil fauna feeding activity in forest stands that were not measured here, i.e., soil temperature and humidity. The differences could also be attributable to the attractiveness of the bait substrate to soil fauna, which may be different in various soil conditions.
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