Published on 05 Jun 2024

Diversity in farm landscapes helps wildlife, global study finds

A new study covering Asia, Europe, North and South America could help balance farmers' goals to earn profits with sustainability and environmental aims.

The research, led by NTU Singapore, showed that when there is variety in agricultural landscapes, more diverse wildlife thrives on the farms.

The optimum approach would be to grow different crops like vegetables and fruit trees on the same farm in varying field sizes and layouts, as well as have semi-natural landscape features that are not crops, such as shrubs and strips of wildflowers.

Besides helping the environment, having a greater variety of wildlife on farms could benefit farmers too, according to Assoc Prof Eleanor Slade and PhD student Tharaka S. Priyadarshana from NTU’s Asian School of the Environment. Past research suggests that better farm biodiversity could improve crop yields.

The scientists behind the study believe that increasing the diversity of crop types and non-crop features within farms could be a more appealing and practical approach for farmers to contribute to biodiversity conservation than existing methods.

Read more about this story on the NTU Research Hub.

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