Advertisement

Biodiversity & Conservation

, Volume 15, Issue 2, pp 631–646 | Cite as

Linking Trees on Farms with Biodiversity Conservation in Subsistence Farming Systems in Nepal

  • Krishna Prasad Acharya
Article

Abstract

The Kingdom of Nepal extends 800 km east to west along the southern slopes of the Himalayas. Because of its biogeographical position, Nepal contains biological elements of both the Indo-Malayan and Palaearctic realms. Beside the trees in forest ecosystems, a large number of tree species are maintained on farms as part of subsistence farming systems. The role of these trees in ensuring the sustainability of agricultural production and the importance of traditional farming systems for the conservation of crop diversity have been well documented. However, the status of farm trees and their role in biodiversity conservation are poorly documented. This paper presents a case study of two villages in the western middle hills of Nepal. It highlights the role of traditional agroforestry practices for the conservation of tree diversity and argues that farms can be considered biodiversity reservoirs. Farm trees help to reduce pressure on community and government forests and create a favorable environment for many plant and animal species. Farm trees also provide social functions in that households with many farm trees no longer exercise their communal rights to extract grass products from community forests, which in turn benefits poor and disadvantaged households. The paper discusses possibilities to improve the role of farm trees in biodiversity conservation. It argues for the development of mechanisms such as tax exemptions and conservation credits that provide benefits to rural communities as compensation for their local and global environmental services including biodiversity conservation.

Key words

Agroforestry Biodiversity Farm trees Nepal Subsistence agriculture 

Abbreviations

BPPN

Biodiversity Profile Project, Nepal

CBS

Central Bureau of Statistics

HH

Households

HMGN

His Majesty's Government of Nepal

LRMP

Land Resources Mapping Project

LSU

Livestock Unit

NBS

Nepal Biodiversity Strategy

R

Species Richness Index

SDI

Species Diversity Index

VDC

Village Development Committee

Preview

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

References

  1. Acharya, K.P., Oli, B.N. 2004Impacts of community forestry in rural livelihoods of midhills of Nepal: a case study from Bharkhore community forest, Parbat DistrictBanko Janakari144650Google Scholar
  2. Acharya K.P., Gautam K. and Acharya B. 2004. The Impacts of Forest Management in Community Forestry on Biodiversity: A Case Study from Mid Hills. Forest Research Leaflet no 18. Department of Forest Research and Survey, Kathmandu, Nepal.Google Scholar
  3. BPPN. 1996. An Assessment of the Representation of the Terrestrial Ecosystems within the Protected Areas System of Nepal. Biodiversity Profile ProjectNepal, Publication No 15. Ministry of Forests and Soil Conservation, Kathmandu, Nepal.Google Scholar
  4. Carter A.S. 1991. Tree Cultivation on Private Land in the Middle Hills of Nepal: A Village Perspective. D.Phil. Thesis, Linacre College, Oxford, UK.Google Scholar
  5. Carter, A.S., Gilmour, D.A. 1989Increase in tree cover on private farmland in Central NepalMount. Res. Develop.9381391Google Scholar
  6. CBS.2001Population Census Main ReportCentral Bureau of StatisticsKathmandu, NepalGoogle Scholar
  7. Das, A.N. 1999Socio-economics of Bamboos in Eastern NepalAberdeen UniversityUKPh.D. ThesisGoogle Scholar
  8. Fonzen, P.F., Oberholzer, E. 1984Use of Multipurpose trees in hill farming systems in Western NepalAgrofor. Syst.2197197Google Scholar
  9. Gautam K.H. 1986. Private Planting: Forestry Practices outside the Forest by Rural People. Forestry Research Paper Series no 1. HMG/USAID/GTZ/IDRC/FORD/Winrock Project, Kathmandu, Nepal.Google Scholar
  10. Gilmour, D.A., Fisher, R.J. 1991Villagers, Forest and Foresters: The Philosophy, Process and Practice of Community Forestry in NepalSahayogi PressKathmandu, NepalGoogle Scholar
  11. HMGN.2002Nepal Biodiversity StrategyMinistry of Forests and Soil ConservationKathmandu, NepalGoogle Scholar
  12. Jha, P.P., Shrestha, K.K., Upadhyay, M.P., Stimart, D.P., Spponer, D.M. 1996Plant genetic resources of Nepal: a guide for plant breeders of agricultural, horticultural and forestry cropsEuphytica87189210CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Joshi K.D., Subedi M., Khadayat K.B. and Staphit B.R. 1996. Genetic diversity and erosion in indigenous arable crops and green manuring species in the mountains of Nepal: some conservation issues. Paper presented at the workshop on Managing Agricultural Biodiversity for Sustainable Mountain Agriculture: Issues and Experiences, LI-BIRD/ICIMOD/IPGRI, Nepal.Google Scholar
  14. Kharal D. 2000. Diversity and Dynamics of Trees Species and its Sustainability in the Rural Farm Land: A Case Study in Chitawan Districts in Nepal. M.Sc. Thesis, The Agricultural University of Norway, Norway.Google Scholar
  15. LRMP (Land Resource Mapping Project)1986Summary ReportHMGN/Government of CanadaKenting Earth Sciences LimitedKathmandu, NepalGoogle Scholar
  16. Mahat T.B.S. 1987. Forestry-Farming Linkages in the Mountains. ICIMOD Occasional Paper No. 7, Kathmandu, Nepal.Google Scholar
  17. Malla Y.B. and Fisher R.J. 1988. Planting trees on private farmland in Nepal: the equity aspect. Proceedings of an International Workshop on Multipurpose Trees for Small Farm UseThailand. Winrock International Institute of Agricultural DevelopmentUSA/IDRC, Canada.Google Scholar
  18. Margalef, R. 1969Diversity and stability: a practical proposal and a model of interdependenceBrookhaven Sympos. Biol.222537PubMedGoogle Scholar
  19. Robinson, P.J. 1986The dependency of crop production on trees and forest landPrinsley, R. eds. Amelioration of Soil by TreesCommonwealth Science CouncilLondon, UK99115Google Scholar
  20. Rusten E.P. 1989. An Investigation of an Indigenous Knowledge System and Management Practices of Tree Fodder Resources in the Middle Hills of Central Nepal. Ph.D. Thesis, Michigan State University, USA.Google Scholar
  21. Shannon, C.E., Weaver, W. 1949The Mathematical Theory of CommunicationUniversity of Illinois PressUrbanaIllinois, USAGoogle Scholar
  22. Shrestha, T.B., Joshi, R.M. 1996RareEndemic and Endangered Plants of NepalWWF Nepal ProgrammeKathmandu, NepalGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Forest Research and SurveyKathmanduNepal

Personalised recommendations