Introduction

Diversification of rhizobia in the soil is a major issue faced by both farmers and soil microbiologists (Sullivan et al 1996). An opportunity to investigate this arose with the introduction into Australian soils in 1994 of a new group of root nodule bacteria for the pasture legume Biserrula pelecinus L. (Howieson et al 1995). B. pelecinus is a mono-specific genus endemic to the Mediterranean region with many agricultural attributes. This study investigated the taxonomic position of root nodule bacteria from B. pelecinus and it is also examining the diversification of these strains following their introduction to soil.

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