Earthworm as Bioindicator of Soil Pollution Around Benghazi City, Libya
Pollution of terrestrial ecosystem is a serious environmental problem worldwide. Earthworm is considered as a domain soil organism. It has been recommended test species to evaluate soil contaminations in acute toxicity. Earthworm density and biomass are strongly influence by pollution. In this study, mortality, biomass, cocoon number of Eisenia fetida were examined during 14 days of exposure to series percentage (100, 75, 50, 25%) for each soil of (Bouatni, Hawari, Lowifia, and Jarotha) locations around Benghazi city, under control conditions. The locations soil was mixed with artificial soil to get the desired percentages. Mortality was recorded in Bouatni soil 100%. However, no mortality observed elsewhere. No cocoon numbers were account in all locations at 100, 75% as well as in Lowifia soil 50%. However, Cocoon numbers were significantly reduced in Bouatni, Hawari and Jarothaat50, 25% compared to control. Interestingly, earthworms body weight were increased significantly, in all locations soil (25, 50, 75%) compared to control earthworm. Our results had shown decreased in cocoon number which can lead to decline in earthworm populations and consequence to reduce soil fertility. This study was first investigation of contamination soils around Benghazi city by using biota as well as put more emphasis on using earthworm as bioindicator.