Biodiv Sci ›› 2022, Vol. 30 ›› Issue (12): 22547.  DOI: 10.17520/biods.2022547

Special Issue: 土壤生物与土壤健康

• Reviews • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Effects of urbanization on soil fauna community structure and diversity

Haifeng Yao1,2, Saichao Zhang1,2, Huayuan Shangguan1,2, Zhipeng Li1, Xin Sun1,2,*()   

  1. 1. Key Laboratory of Urban Environment and Health/Fujian Key Laboratory of Watershed Ecology, Institute of Urban Environment, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Xiamen, Fujian 361021
    2. University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100049
  • Received:2022-09-22 Accepted:2022-11-15 Online:2022-12-20 Published:2023-01-10
  • Contact: *E-mail:


Background & Aims: Urbanization threatens biodiversity on local to global scales, and soil fauna is an essential component of soil biodiversity and play a vital role in the maintenance of soil health and ecosystem functions in cities. In recent years, many studies previously focused on the structure and diversity of urban soil fauna communities that have made significant progress to understand their complex relationships. However, systematic summaries and discussions are still limited.
Progress: This review advances our knowledge in these areas by drawing upon current urban soil biodiversity studies with relevant broader research on soil fauna. From these works, we summarize the major pathways by which urbanization affects the community composition and diversity of soil fauna and highlight ecological processes that potentially threaten the persistence of soil fauna in cities.
Prospects: We recommend that future studies should focus on (1) the impact of urbanization on gut microbiomes of soil fauna and how it relates to changes in soil fauna functions, (2) the environmental determinants to the structures and functions of soil food webs in urban ecosystems, and (3) the role of soil fauna in the regulation of human pathogens. Ultimately, our review provides a relevant scientific basis for biodiversity protection and maintenance of soil health and ecosystem stability in cities.

Key words: urbanization, soil fauna diversity, soil food web, soil health, land use, soil properties