Flotation

In most terrestrial ecosystems, macroarthropods are inhabitants of the mineral soil layers, and sampling them requires the use of coring tools. Soil cores of 5-25 mm diameter and 10-25mm deep will recover the majority of macroarthropods in most systems. These monoliths may be crumbled and hand sorted, or washed through a set of sieves with running water (Edwards, 1991). The flotation procedure of Behre (1987) involves washing the soil through such a set of sieves of decreasing mesh sizes, with collecting bowls arranged in steps and connected to an overflow. The magnesium sulfate solution used for washing is thus collected and reused.

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