Categories > topics > natural resources > soil resources
biological soil crusts
Communities commonly found on the soil surface in arid and semi-arid ecosystems, these consist of mosses, cyanobacteria, lichens, algae, and microfungi, which weave together and adhere to the soil to form a matrix that lessens erosion, supports nitrogen fixation, and retains moisture. These organisms are important to the functioning of ecosystems and to the organization of plant and soil communities.
This category is also used for biocrusts, cryptobiotic soil crusts, cryptogamic soil crusts, and microbiotic soil crusts