Managing ecosystem services: a grassland experiment

Great blog post from the Applied Ecologist’s Blog

The Applied Ecologist's blog

In this post Katherine Orford discusses her recent paper ‘Modest enhancements to conventional grassland diversity improve the provision of pollination services

You can also read a blog post from the Associate Editor who handled this paper, Peter Manning here: Pastures new for pollinators?

Grassland diversity

Species-rich grasslands were once widespread across Western Europe. However, post-war agricultural intensification has resulted in wide-scale conversion of these diverse grasslands into intensive and profitable systems for livestock rearing. Modern grassland management typically entails high fertiliser application rates and frequent defoliation by intensive grazing and cutting regimes. Such practices have resulted in significant declines in species diversity with swards often dominated by competitive commercial grasses species including Lolium perenne (perennial rye-grass) and Holcus lanatus (Yorkshire fog). It has been estimated that only 2% of grasslands have escaped agricultural intensification in the UK.

As the human population is forecast to rise from 7 billion today…

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Ecosystem services survey – share your thoughts

What are your thoughts on Ecosystem Services? Please share your opinion by completing this survey.

Jeff Ollerton's Biodiversity Blog

Researchers at the University of the West of England (UWE) are carrying out a public survey on attitudes to the concept of ecosystem services, a subject that I’ve referred to many times on this blog, most recently last week.

The UWE researchers write:  “……give us your views on the term ‘ecosystem services’! Do you feel it is a valuable concept? How should it be used and communicated? Regardless of whether you work with the concept or not, we would like to hear your views. The survey closes 5th February 2016……survey takes 10 minutes or less!”

I’ve done is and they’re right, it’s very short, but well worth completing as it should generate some interesting data into how far the concept has penetrated into the public consciousness.  The link to the survey is:

https://uwe.onlinesurveys.ac.uk/ecosystem-services-sfep

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