The intricate relationship between biodiversity loss and human well-being is increasingly being understood in ecological and economic terms. Despite the knowledge of the multiple dimensions of this relationship and its importance, species and ecosystems are still disappearing at an alarming rate. Anthropogenic pressures are the prime reason for this trend, yet attempts to reduce such pressures and conserve species in protected areas have only achieved limited success. This has led to the realization that sustainable consumptive use approaches that can combine production and conservation functions are also important in conserving biodiversity in human-dominated landscapes. Agroforestry, as part of a multifunctional working landscape, can play a major role in conserving and even enhancing biodiversity from farms to the landscape level in both tropical and temperate regions of the world. This special issue is an attempt to bring together a collection of articles that not only explore and demonstrate the biodiversity benefits of agroforestry, but also the mechanisms by which agroforestry systems sustain such high floristic and faunal diversity. While it is important to conserve biodiversity in protected areas, the articles in the special issue reiterate the importance of agroforestry as a critical tool in conserving biodiversity in human-dominated landscapes.
This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution.
Buy single article
Instant access to the full article PDF.
Price includes VAT (USA)
Tax calculation will be finalised during checkout.
CBD (2010a) Convention on biological diversity secretariat, Global Biodiversity Outlook 3. CBD, Montreal
CBD (2010b) http://www.cbd.int/decision/cop/?id=12268. Accessed 10 April 2012
Conservation International (2012) http://www.conservation.org/learn/biodiversity/species/pages/projects.aspx. Accessed 9 April 2012
Costanza R, d’Arge R, de Groot R, Farber S, Grasso M, Hannon B, Limburg K, Naeem S, O’Neill RV, Paruelo J, Raskin RG, Sutton P, van den Belt M (1997) The value of the world’s ecosystem services and natural capital. Nature 387:253–260
FAO (2010) Global forest resource assessment. FAO Forestry Paper 163. Rome, Italy
Harvey CA, González Villalobos JA (2007) Agroforestry systems conserve species-rich but modified assemblages of tropical birds and bats. Biodivers Conserv 16:2257–2292
Harvey CA, Gonzales JG, Somarriba E (2006) Dung beetle and terrestrial mammal diversity in forest, indigenous agroforestry systems and plantain monocultures in Talamanca, Costa Rica. Biodivers Conserv 15:555–585
Hutton JM, Leader-Williams N (2003) Sustainable use and incentive-driven conservation: realigning human and conservation interests. Oryx 37:215–226
Jose S (2009) Agroforestry for ecosystem services and environmental benefits: an overview. Agrofor Syst 76:1–10
Jose S (2011) Managing native and non-native plant species in agroforestry. Agrofor Syst 83:101–105
McNeely JA (2004) Nature versus nurture: managing relationships between forests, agroforestry and wild biodiversity. Agrofor Syst 61:155–165
McNeely JA, Schroth G (2006) Agroforestry and biodiversity conservation—traditional practices, present dynamics, and lessons for the future. Biodivers Conserv 15:549–554
Moguel P, Toledo VM (1999) Biodiversity conservation in traditional coffee systems of Mexico. Conserv Biol 13:11–21
Perfecto I, Rice R, Greenberg R, van der Voorst ME (1996) Shade coffee: a disappearing refuge for biodiversity. Bioscience 46:598–608
Perrings C, Naeem S, Ahrestani F, Bunker DE, Burkill P, Canziani G, Elmqvist T, Ferrati R, Fuhrman J, Jaksic F, Kawabata Z, Kinzig A, Mace GM, Milano F, Mooney H, Prieur-Richard A-H, Tschirhart J, Weisser W (2010) Ecosystem services for 2020. Science 330:323–324
Rands MRW, Adam WM, Bennun L, Butchart SHM, Clements A, Coomes D, Entwistle A, Hodge I, Kapos V, Scharlemann JPW, Sutherland WJ, Vira B (2010) Biodiversity conservation: challenges beyond 2010. Science 329:1298–1303
Schroth G, da Fonseca GAB, Harvey CA, Gascon C, Vasconcelos H, Izac AN (2004) Agroforestry and biodiversity conservation in tropical landscapes. Island Press, Washington, DC
Wilcove DS, Rothstein D, Dubow J, Phillips A, Losos E (1998) Quantifying threats to imperiled species in the United States. Bioscience 48:607–615
Zak DR, Holmes WE, While DC, Peackck AD, Tilman D (2003) Plant diversity, soil microbial communities, and ecosystem function: are there any links? Ecology 84:2042–2050
The author would like to express his sincere gratitude to Drs. Larry Godsey and Sougata Bardhan for their comments on an earlier version of the manuscript.
About this article
Cite this article
Jose, S. Agroforestry for conserving and enhancing biodiversity. Agroforest Syst 85, 1–8 (2012). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10457-012-9517-5
- CBD strategic plan
- Sustainable consumptive land use
- Habitat loss
- Faunal diversity
- Floristic diversity
- Microbial diversity