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Combining high biodiversity with high yields in tropical agroforests


Clough, Y; Barkmann, J; Juhrbandt, J; Kessler, M; Wanger, T C; Anshary, A; Buchori, D; Cicuzza, D; Darras, K; Putra, D D; Erasmi, S; Pitopang, R; Schmidt, C; Schulze, C H; Seidel, D; Steffan-Dewenter, I; Stenchly, K; Vidal, S; Weist, M; Wielgoss, A C; Tscharntke, T (2011). Combining high biodiversity with high yields in tropical agroforests. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America (PNAS), 108(20):8311-8316.

Abstract

Local and landscape-scale agricultural intensification is a major driver of global biodiversity loss. Controversially discussed solutions include wildlife-friendly farming or combining high-intensity farming with land-sparing for nature. Here, we integrate biodiversity and crop productivity data for smallholder cacao in Indonesia to exemplify for tropical agroforests that there is little relationship between yield and biodiversity under current management, opening substantial opportunities for wildlife-friendly management. Species richness of trees, fungi, invertebrates, and vertebrates did not decrease with yield. Moderate shade, adequate labor, and input level can be combined with a complex habitat structure to provide high biodiversity as well as high yields. Although livelihood impacts are held up as a major obstacle for wildlife-friendly farming in the tropics, our results suggest that in some situations, agroforests can be designed to optimize both biodiversity and crop production benefits without adding pressure to convert natural habitat to farmland.

Abstract

Local and landscape-scale agricultural intensification is a major driver of global biodiversity loss. Controversially discussed solutions include wildlife-friendly farming or combining high-intensity farming with land-sparing for nature. Here, we integrate biodiversity and crop productivity data for smallholder cacao in Indonesia to exemplify for tropical agroforests that there is little relationship between yield and biodiversity under current management, opening substantial opportunities for wildlife-friendly management. Species richness of trees, fungi, invertebrates, and vertebrates did not decrease with yield. Moderate shade, adequate labor, and input level can be combined with a complex habitat structure to provide high biodiversity as well as high yields. Although livelihood impacts are held up as a major obstacle for wildlife-friendly farming in the tropics, our results suggest that in some situations, agroforests can be designed to optimize both biodiversity and crop production benefits without adding pressure to convert natural habitat to farmland.

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105 citations in Web of Science®
111 citations in Scopus®
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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:07 Faculty of Science > Institute of Systematic Botany and Botanical Gardens
Dewey Decimal Classification:580 Plants (Botany)
Language:English
Date:2011
Deposited On:01 Dec 2011 10:08
Last Modified:05 Apr 2016 15:07
Publisher:National Academy of Sciences
ISSN:0027-8424
Free access at:Publisher DOI. An embargo period may apply.
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.1016799108
PubMed ID:21536873

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