Why Plant Trees / Nature Conservation & Biodiversity
Why Farm Forestry
Why Plant Trees
Markets for products & services
Designing a Farm Forest

Nature Conservation and Biodiversity

Any revegetation project, including those involving a single species, provides the opportunity to help protect native plants and animals, and enhance the landscape. By the same token, poorly designed or located planting can destroy or degrade important habitats. Whilst landowners may have a legal responsibility not to clear or damage native forests or grasslands, there are many other reasons why farmers might wish to encourage and protect wildlife and indigenous plants.

Native forests can provide timber, posts, firewood, seed, flowers and other forest products for farm use or sale. Although farmers generally need to develop a forest management plan and obtain a permit before undertaking timber harvesting from their native forests, minor forest products, like fallen timber for fuelwood, may be freely harvested for personal use in most areas. This provides farmers with resources that protect their forests and ensure regeneration, as well as the opportunity to reduce their farm management and household costs.

Native Forest Silviculture

Local native plant communities provide the best source of indigenous propagation material, such as seed and cuttings for revegetation projects. Only a small amount of seed, roots or shoots should be collected from any individual plant. Theseselections should be made from a large number of individuals dispersed over the entire area so as to maximize the genetic base and minimize the impact of collection on any individual plants. In most cases such material cannot be removed from local, state or federal parks and reserves without a permit.

The potential of native insects, birds and animals to assist in controlling pests of agricultural crops and farm trees is seen as an important reason for protecting native plant communities. There is increasing evidence of the financial benefits of ecological functions performed by biodiversity in farm forestry as well as other environmental functions such as shelter and shade.

Planting Trees to Reduce the Impact of Pests
Planting Trees to Reduce the Spread of Weeds
Forest protection

Despite these and other ecological benefits, it is often the joy of attracting native wildlife back to the farm that drives many farmers’ commitment to native vegetation and wildlife. Native birds, reptiles and mammals, if not present in large numbers, rarely threaten agricultural productivity. Providing a small amount of suitable habitat on just one farm can make a significant contribution to the protection of regionally important plant and animal species. Patches of native vegetation can act as islands or refuges while shelterbelt, roadside and waterway revegetation can act as valuable corridors allowing species to move into new areas or isolated communities to interbreed. The principles of designing tree planting and management projects to support native wildlife are simple and easy to integrate into most farm forestry programs.

Designing Revegetation Projects For Wildlife

Back to top

Farm Forest Line © 2009 | Disclaimer