Mineral Fertilizers Influence the Macrofauna of Soils Under Cocoa Trees in the South-Western Côte d’Ivoire

  •  Hypolith K. Kouadio    
  •  Alain Jacques A. Kotaix    
  •  Sydiki Bakayoko    
  •  Emmanuel K. Kassin    
  •  Aïdara Sékou    
  •  Jean Noël Ehounou    
  •  Norbert N. Kouamé    
  •  Marise E. Assi    
  •  Louis Koko    


A study on mineral fertilization of soils was carried out for two years in three cocoa farms in the Nawa region of south-western Côte d’Ivoire. The aim of this study was to evaluate the effects of mineral fertilizers on soil macrofauna. The experimental design was Fisher block with four treatment with three repetitions. The treatments were control without fertilizer (T0), NPK 0-23-19 fertilizer (T1), NPK 0-15-15 + 17 CaO + 5 MgO + 1 B2O3 + 0.5 Zn (T2) and NPK 4-10-10 + 19 CaO + 4 MgO + 0.8 B2O3 + 0.3 Zn (T3). Twelve soil monoliths were made per treatment and per site, to count the macrofauna of the soil. Each soil monolith was subdivided into three strata 0-10 cm, 10-20 cm and 20-30 cm. The organisms were counted and classified into functional groups. The abundance, species richness and diversity indices of Shannon-weaver and Piélou were determined. The analysis of variance of the numbers of individuals in the macrofauna did not show a significant difference between the treatments on different strata of the monoliths during the second year of the trial. However, during the first year, all the treatments with fertilizer in the 0-10 cm stratum had a more abundant macrofauna than that of the control without fertilizer at Soubré and Mayo. Multivariate analyses (AFC) showed links between functional groups of organisms and treatments. Myriapods and earthworms were linked to the T2 and T3 treatments, microarthropods to T1 and other organisms to T0. As for macrofauna diversity, the highest value of species richness (7 species), Shannon-weaver (2) and Piélou (1) indices were found in the fertilized treatments. Mineral fertilizers thus presented better conditions for the expansion of macrofauna. A reasoned application of mineral fertilizers creates a favourable living environment for certain soil organisms.

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.