The Science and Development Network, a non-profit organization based in England and Wales, reported that research has shown traditional farming is crucial for keeping certain species alive. The research was conducted in developing countries as well as Europe.
It seems biodiversity is important to maintain the health and vitality of the land, the plants, birds and insects, as well as a host of other animals that feed off the land and call it their home. Industrial farming apparently harms the ecological bubble and depletes the natural habitats. Huh, go figure...
See the excerpt below.
Traditional farming 'can save threatened species'
22 December 2011 | EN
Traditional farming methods are crucial for protecting a number of threatened bird species in the developing world, including bustards, cranes, ibises and vultures, a study has found.
Livestock grazing and features associated with arable farming — such as hedgerows — create environmental conditions that certain birds currently depend on for food, shelter and breeding, the authors report.
But as industrial farming methods eliminate these habitats, these species are threatened with extinction, said Hugh Wright, a researcher in the School of Environmental Sciences at the University of East Anglia, United Kingdom, and lead author of the study, published in Conservation Letters earlier this month (5 December).
"There really is no hope for these species if industrial farming continues unchecked," he told SciDev.Net.
Although reintroducing or mimicking traditional farming techniques has had success in conserving wildlife in Europe, "conservation in the developing world has always focused on pristine forest ecosystems and has paid little attention to where farming might be beneficial," Wright said.
The study found 29 bird species threatened by the decline of traditional agriculture in developing countries. This number could be much higher if all organisms, rather than just birds, are considered, as evidence from Europe suggests that traditional farming also benefits reptiles, amphibians, butterflies and even plants, Wright said.
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Image courtesy of SciDev.net.