297 pages, no illustrations
The Farm as Natural Habitat is a vital new contribution to the debate about agriculture and its impacts on the land. Arising from the conviction that the agricultural landscape as a whole could be restored to a healthy diversity, the book challenges the notion that the dominant agricultural landscape - bereft of its original vegetation and wildlife and despoiled by chemical runoff - is inevitable if we are to feed ourselves. Contributors bring together insights and practices from the fields of conservation biology, sustainable agriculture, and environmental restoration to link agriculture and biodiversity, farming and nature, in celebrating a unique alternative to conventlonal agriculture.
Rejecting the idea that "ecological sacrifice zones" are a necessary part of feeding a hungry world, the book offers compelling examples of an alternative agriculture that can produce not only healthful food, but fully functioning ecosystems and abundant populations of native species. Contributors include Collin Bode, George Boody, Brian DeVore, Arthur (Tex) Hawkins, Buddy Huffaker, Rhonda Janke, Richard Jefferson, Nick Jordan, Cheryl Miller, Heather Robertson, Carol Shennan, Judith Soule, Beth Waterhouse, and others. The Farm as Natural Habitat is both hopeful and visionary, grounded in real examples, and guided by a commitment to healthy land and thriving communities. It is the first book to offer a viable approach to addressing the challenges of protecting and restoring blodiversity on private agricultural land and is essential reading for anyone concerned with issues of land or blodiversity conservation, farming and agriculture, ecological restoration, or the health of rural communities and landscapes.
oIt is wonderfully well-written, with compelling ideas and stories-about restoration, synergy and integration. In these narratives is a future for farming. It will not be easy, but the thoughts need to be set out before others may follow." --Natural Resources Forum
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Dana L. Jackson is associate director of the Land Stewardship Project in White Bear Lake, Minnesota. Laura L. Jackson is associate professor of biology at the University of Northern Iowa in Cedar Falls, Iowa.