The Use of Non-standardized Invertebrates in Soil Ecotoxicology
The first part of this chapter presents general considerations on soil invertebrates, such as their representativeness in the animal kingdom and the ways they are classified into groups, in addition to some morpho/physiological characteristics and habit requirements. The following section briefly describes the importance of the services provided by soil fauna in terrestrial ecosystems, highlighting the use of invertebrates in soil ecotoxicological assays, which are performed to assess the risk of potentially polluting substances for the terrestrial environment. This part also lists the species of soil invertebrates currently used in standard laboratorial ecotoxicological assays and the improvements that have been made in these type of assays, including the selection of new standard test species. Finally, several examples of the use of alternative species in the soil ecotoxicology testing are presented, as well as the advantages and disadvantages of their use. The main taxonomic groups considered in this discussion are Earthworms, Collembolans, Enchytraeids, Isopods and a few others with recognized potential for ecotoxicological assays.