The NSS Bulletin - ISSN 1090-6924
Volume 37 Number 4: 89-93 - October 1975

A publication of the National Speleological Society

A Preliminary Study of Heterotropic Microorganisms as Factors in Substrate Selection of Troglobitic Invertebrates
Gary W. Dickson


Troglobitic invertebrates from three caves in Virginia were studied during the summer months of 1974 with regard to their association with the heterotropic microorganisms found in the mud substrate and other sediments.

Mud samples were obtained aseptically from terrestrial mud banks, stream pools, and mud-bottom drip pools in the three caves. In each habitat, bacterial and fungal populations of the sediments were compared between areas of troglobitic invertebrate congregations and areas in which no such animals were observed.

Troglobitic invertebrates and fungal populations were positively correlated, but the distribution of bacterial populations and troglobitic invertebrates were not.

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