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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

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AFSRC Picture of the Week, June 6, 2005
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 Microscopic mite from soil

A single teaspoon of fertile soil can contain more than a billion organisms, more than twice the number of people living in North America today.  These organisms range widely in size, from microscopic bacteria and fungi to the large earthworms and centipedes that can be easily seen with the unaided eye. Scientists at the AFSRC are investigating what role soil microinvertibrates, such as this microscopic mite, play in the decomposition of plant materials.

Photo by Barry Harter

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Last Modified: 6/7/2005
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