Ornithogenic Factor of Soil Formation in Antarctica: A Review

E. V. Abakumov, I. Yu Parnikoza, M. Zhianski, R. Yaneva, A. V. Lupachev, M. P. Andreev, D. Yu Vlasov, J. Riano, N. Jaramillo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Abstract: The role of ornithogenic factor in the formation of soils and soil cover patterns in continental and maritime Antarctica is considered. The results of long-term soil studies at key sites in coastal oases of East Antarctica (Larsemann Hills, the Haswell Islands) and on the Subantarctic islands (King George Island, Livingston Island, the Argentine Islands) are summarized. The influence of the penguin rookeries on the morphology and physicochemical properties of soils is shown. These rookeries determine the vast spatial zones of biogeochemical influence on the environment around themselves. Special attention is paid to the phenomenon of ornithochory, which is maintained by the flying seabirds (skuas, albatrosses, terns, petrels, etc.) and is manifested in redistribution of vegetation, soil material, and meso- and microbiota to the areas that were previously free of vegetation and soil cover (periglacial areas, fresh moraines, rocky outcrops, etc.).

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)528-540
Number of pages13
JournalEurasian Soil Science
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 2021

Scopus subject areas

  • Soil Science
  • Earth-Surface Processes


  • Antarctic soil formation
  • biogeochemistry
  • ornithochory
  • ornithogenic and non-ornithogenic
  • soils


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