It is invariably present in soils, where compounds are formed by nitrifying bacteria.
The chief importance of nitrogenous compounds depends upon their assimilation by living plants, which, in their development, absorb these compounds from the soil, wherein they are formed mainly by the action of nitrifying bacteria.
The change takes place in two stages and is effected by two special groups of nitrifying bacteria, which are present in all soils.
The discoveries that some species of nitrifying bacteria and perhaps pigmented forms are capable of carbon-assimilation, that others can fix free nitrogen and that a number of decompositions hitherto unsuspected are accom fished by Schizomycetes have ut thequestions of P Y Y, P d nutrition and fermentation in quite new lights.
The nitrifying, nitrogen-fixing, sulphurand iron-bacteria he regards as monotrophic, i.e.
As regards the ammonium carbonate accumulating in the soil from the conversion of urea and other sources, we know from Winogradsky's researches that it undergoes oxidation in two stages owing to the activity of the so-called " nitrifying " bacteria (an unfortunate term inasmuch as " nitrification " refers merely to a particular phase of the cycle of changes undergone by nitrogen).
It is probable that important consequences of these actions result from the presence of nitrifying bacteria in rotten stone, FIG.
Fresh manure abounds in de-nitrifying bacteria, and these organisms not only reduce the nitrates to nitrites, even setting free nitrogen and ammonia, but their effect extends to the undoing of the work of what nitrifying bacteria may be present also, with great loss.
By nitrifying bacteria - it is probably comparatively small.
Beyerinck has shown that Spirillum desulphuricans, a definite anaerobic form, attacks and reduces sulphates, thus undoing the work of the sulphur bacteria as certain de-nitrifying bacteria reverse the operations of nitro-bacteria.
The idea that this film of bacteria oxidizes the alcohol beneath by merely condensing atmospheric oxygen in its interstices, after the manner of spongy platinum, has long been given up; but the explanation of the action as an incomplete combustion, depending on the peculiar respiration of these organisms - much as in the case of nitrifying and sulphur bacteria - is not clear, though the discovery that the acetic bacteria will not only oxidize alcohol to acetic acid, but further oxidize the latter to CO 2 and 01-1 2 supports the view that the alcohol is absorbed by the organism and employed as its respirable substance.