Virgin forest key to retaining biodiversity
Sep 16 2011 Read 2096 Times
According to a new report, which was compiled from 138 existing rainforest studies, showed that primary rainforest can support the most species.
Published in the journal Nature, the report looks at the benefits and pitfalls of differing methods of land exploitation - all of which impact upon soil quality.
The researchers wanted to find out whether it is better to develop small areas of land for intensive use or commandeer wider areas far less intensively.
Study co-leader Luke Gibson from the National University of Singapore said that it may be better to focus efforts on developing agricultural sites that are already in use.
"If you have to use agricultural intensification of areas that are already used for agricultural production instead of focusing more on other forms of agriculture that attempt to maintain some levels of biodiversity, such as agrofrestry, that strategy might be more effective," Gibson claimed.
The research also showed that selectively logged areas of rainforest could support far more species than more intensive regions and that some mammals did better in areas that were subjected to some form of industrialisation.
Recently, the EU claimed it would not damage the continent's forests at the expense of increasing biofuel production.
Posted by Claire Manning
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