Biodiversity and microhabitat distribution of earthworms at "evolution canyon," a mediterranean microsite, Mount Carmel, Israel

Tomáš Pavlíček, Csaba Csuzdi, Gil Smooha, Avigdor Beiles, Eviatar Nevo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Seven species of earthworms were identified at a Lower Nahal Oren microsite, Mt. Carmel, Israel, known as "Evolution Canyon": Bimastos syriacus (Rosa, 1893), Dendrobaena semitica (Rosa, 1893), D. orientalis (ernosvitov, 1940), D. veneta (Rosa, 1886), D. samarigera samarigera (Rosa, 1893), Microscolex dubius (Fletcher, 1887; the first record in Israel), and Allolobophora sp. Characteristic compositions of earthworms were found on the south-facing slope (SF), the north-facing slope (NF), and the bottom of the dry watercourse. B. syriacus was abundant in all three habitats together with 3-4 smaller Dendrobaena or Allolobophora species. D. semitica was prevalent on the bottom, while D. orientalis and M. dubius were found only there. D. veneta and D. s. samarigera were more abundant on NF and SF, respectively. Allolobophora sp. was found on both slopes in very low numbers. Earthworm density on ecologically warmer, drier, and more heterogeneous SF was significantly higher in the shade under tree canopies and bushes than in open sunny microhabitats, while on NF no significant differences were found between shady and sunny microhabitats.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)449-454
Number of pages6
JournalIsrael Journal of Zoology
Issue number4
StatePublished - 1996

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
We thank A. Korol for commenting on the manuscript, and Ora Manheim and Ron Ophir for computing the log-linear analyses. For financial support, we thank the Israel Ministry of Science for grants 1426 and 414 7; GSF-Forschungszentrum fur Umwelt und Gesundheit GmbH, Neuherberg; the Israel Discount Bank Chair of Evolutionary Biology; and the Ancell-Teicher Research Foundation for Genetics and Molecular Evolution.

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Animal Science and Zoology


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