Wednesday, 24 August 2011

Livestock key to less desertification

A report in Australian magazine Farm Weekly suggests that using livestock is the only management tool available to combat climate change-induced desertification.

The ‘unpopular and controversial’ idea arises from observations made by Allan Savory, president of the Africa Centre for Holistic Management, of southern Africa, where it was noticed that the African savannah could support extremely large herds of herbivores year after year without degradation.

In contrast to this, land that was destocked to accepted optimum conditions and allowed to return to wilderness was increasingly subject to desertification. Mr Savory argues that subjecting grassland to occasional heavy grazing, which mimicked ‘natural’ conditions, actually improved vegetation growth. 

Read the full report here.