Death closes the circle
by Antonio Jordán, University of Seville, Sevilla, Spain
Animal decomposition goes through four stages: fresh, bloat, decay and remains. During the last steps of decay, fluids form an island around the carcass (which you can see in the picture as an area of dead vegetation). During advanced decay, organic substances and nutrients (N, P, K, Ca, Mg...) turn to soil after mineralization and changes in acidity may be caused locally. Finally, the animal is completely skeletonized.
Antonio Jordán (distributed via imaggeo.egu.eu)