Nau mai haere mai and thank you for your interest in how to improve native biodiversity on farms! It has been exciting to start to see our work come to life, but even more exciting is to hear from farmers that the work we are doing is useful. The resources we've developed are designed to share a little of the science of healthy biodiversity and a lot of the practical steps needed to mesh biodiversity into a farm system in a way that enhances the farm and the environment.
A bit of background: What is biodiversity?
Biodiversity translates simply to "biological diversity", or the diversity of living things in an area. To enhance biodiversity on farms, we ideally want to increase variation at three scales: genetic variation within species on the farm, the total number of species on the farm, and the diversity of ecosystems on the farm. Watch this short animation to learn more.
Our website (www.biodiversity.nz) is the first of a range of resources we are piloting to see what will be used and useful for farmers and farm advisors looking to make gains in the iron-farm native biodiversity and overall environmental footprint. On the website, you can find some of the information our ecologists use in developing on-farm biodiversity plans (in the resources section). We aren’t trying to recreate the wheel with this work, just make it a bit easier to make positive changes. The resources we are creating are digital learning and podcasts as well as tools to support in-person biodiversity planning on-farm. We have had a lot of interest in the online learning that we are developing, and we are excited for it to become publicly available by May 2023.
Over the next six weeks we will be releasing a podcast each week which is an interview with experts by a leading young farmer, Tim Dangen. These podcasts are packed full of practical advice and inspiration, and about 20-30 minutes long. Long enough to come away with some new know-how, but short enough to fit into a car trip! Follow us on social media (we are on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram) to get useful gems from the podcasts, read our weekly blogs, and to keep up to date on other resources in the pipeline. Feel free to leave your feedback in the social media comments or email us – we would love to hear from you.
I am looking forward to sharing where this work gets to and also our insights each month.
Until next time, be well.