The aim of the present study was to enumerate the diversity of gut bacterial population of epigeic earthworm species, E. eugeniae exposed to heavy metal. Adult earthworms were treated with three different doses (0.06%, 0.13% and 0.19% w/v) of potassium dichromate (K2Cr2O7) for this purpose. The gut samples were serially diluted and inoculated in seven distinct media viz. Jensen's media, King’smedium B base, Burk’s media, Yeast Mannitol Agar media, Vogel- Johnson agar base media, Luria Bertani Broth Miller and Nutrient agar media. Dose dependent decrease in bacterial population was observed in treated worms when compared with control. Maximum percent change (62.59%) in bacterial population was observed in Burk’s media when exposed to 0.19% chromium. The results revealed that chromium alters the microbial population present in gut of earthworms. Therefore, changes in earthworms’ gut microbial community due to soil management practices can also be used as markers of soil fertility and quality.
Bacterial population, chromium, Earthworm, Media
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