horizons. Young soils in the early stages of formation lack distinct horizons.The worlds soils are classified mostly based on their defining soil horizons.
General Biotic Contributions to Soil Formation
The biota factor holds such a great influence on soil formation becauseit is colossal group of many agents. Members from every kingdom play a roleat all stages of soil formation. If we were to start with the birth of new soilsfrom parent material we could begin with lichens and algae. Lichens areamong the first inhabitants of bare rock (Paul and Clark, 1989). Throughtheir biological processes lichens secrete acids that decompose or weatherrock, thus starting the soil formation process. Algae can also inhabit rocksurfaces as well as the inside of rocks in pores and cracks. Algae are able toexpand these crevasses by secreting acids, like lichens, that contribute to thedegradation of the rock (Sylvia, Fuhrman, Hartel, and Zuberer, 1998). Treeroots also enhance weathering in this manner as well by releasing carbondioxide that turns to carbonic acidin the presence of water (Muller, Ray2011).Biotic agents such as plant roots and worms release gums or slimesthat attract clay particles which dry out,creating water stable aggregates.When clay clumps together it acts like sand (Mueller, Ray, 2011). This allowswater to move more freely through the soil. Water-stable aggregates alsocontribute to soil structure. Animals such as worms, moles, and other