Acta Univ. Agric. Silvic. Mendelianae Brun. 2013, 61, 1423-1429
Published online 2013-09-28

Avoidance behaviour testing of Eisenia andrei in biodegradable plastic environment

Zuzana Tichá1, Pavel Mach1, Markéta Žáková2, Monika Vítězová3

1Department of Agriculture, Food and Environment Engineering, Mendel University in Brno, Zemědělská 1, 613 00 Brno, Czech Republic
2Department of Zoology, Fisheries, Hydrobiology and Apiculture, Mendel University in Brno, Zemědělská 1, 613 00 Brno, Czech Republic
3Department of Agrochemistry, Soil Science, Microbiology and Plant Nutrition, Mendel University in Brno, Zemědělská 1, 613 00 Brno, Czech Republic

Avoidance behaviour test with the earthworms (ISO 17512-1:2008) is a rapid screening test for the evaluation of soil and the influence of pollutants and chemicals on the behaviour of earthworms. The purpose of the testing is to determine the avoidance behaviour of earthworm (in this case Eisenia andrei was used) which can be used as an organism for the composting and occur naturally in soil environment. The methodology was modified according to the needs of the avoidance behaviour testing of earthworms in biodegradable plastic environment. It is a biodegradable thermoplastic material Mater-Bi, which is produced from corn starch. Californian earthworm (Eisenia andrei) was chosen as a test organism. The two-chamber test was used in testing. 10 earthworms were used, which were exposed to a number of concentrations of the test substance, which was mixed into the compost environment. It was recorded both a positive result, avoidance reaction, as well as a negative result, non-avoidance reaction and also there was a case, where individuals prefer both substrates equally. Organisms showed no escape reaction and were fairly evenly distributed in both halves of the test vessel, it can be assessed that organisms prefer both substrates equally. In testing, the mortality was zero, none of the individuals died, at the conclusion of the test there were not found any dead individuals. Avoidance higher than 80 % didn’t occur; it cannot be said that the substrate is toxic or degraded.


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