Which one of the following processes during decomposition is correctly described?

(a)  Fragmentation-Carried out by organisms such as earthworm

(b)  Humification-Leads to the accumulation of a dark coloured substance humus, which undergoes microbial action at a very fast rate

(c)  Catabolism-Last  step in the decomposition under fully anaerobic condition

(d)  Leaching-Water soluble inorganic nutrients rise to the top layers of soil.

(a) Fragmentation is one of the steps during decomposition, in which detritus is converted into small fragments. Humification leads to dark coloured amorphous substance called humus that is highly resistent to microbial action and undergoes decomposition at an extremely slow rate.

Catabolism is the set of metabolic pathways that breaks down molecules into smaller units to release energy. Leaching refers to the loss of water soluble plant nutrients from the soil due to rain and irrigation.

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