Soil invertebrate organisms are responsible for several biochemical processes indispensable for the correct functioning of ecosystems. Because of the high diversity of animals that occurs in the soil environment, some invertebrates such as earthworms and nematodes are highly important in trophic chains, with high number of species and the effect that they exert on both natural and agricultural systems. However, although numerous studies have evaluated the implications of these organisms in soil processes and their consequences on crop productivity, the interaction between earthworms and nematodes has received little attention in recent years. This chapter reviews studies focusing on the elucidation of the interaction between earthworms and nematodes in diverse situations in which they occur, for example, the vermicompost process and the native and agricultural systems. Several studies have shown that the direct and/or indirect action of earthworms can highly modify nematode populations. In addition, in the presence of earthworms, the damage caused by phytonematodes can be reduced in some crops.
Part of the book: Earthworms