The Effects of Farmland Heterogeneity on Ecosystem Service Provision in the Monteregie

Ecology and Society
14:30, vendredi 20 déc. 2019 (15 minutes)
Pause café   02:45 PM à 02:55 PM (10 minutes)
Salle AB

Landscape simplification and the intensification of farming practices in agricultural landscapes is well-known to have negative effects on the provision of many non-food ecosystem services. Given that re-introducing large amounts of natural habitat in intensive agricultural landscapes is not feasible in many places, incorporating greater heterogeneity in cropped areas may be a key lever to increase ecosystem service provision. However, the details on how to most effectively increase cropped area heterogeneity for the provision of multiple ecosystem services remains unclear. Notably, the trade-offs that occur between different ecosystem services at different levels of farmland heterogeneity are not well understood. Furthermore, evidence is needed about the scales at which heterogeneity is most effective and how these effects interact with local management practices. We aimed to determine the effects of farmland heterogeneity, specifically crop diversity and mean field size, on key ecosystem services. We evaluated how these effects change at different scales and with different local management practices. We measured the ecosystem services of food production, soil fertility, water quality regulation, carbon storage, pollination and pest control in 32 soybean fields in sites along a gradient of farmland heterogeneity in the Monteregie, Quebec. We predicted that sites with higher heterogeneity would provide more regulating services due to a higher amount of habitat and floral resources, but may have lower food production. Early results demonstrate that the mean size of agricultural fields has a stronger influence on the provision of services than crop diversity. Understanding the trade-offs that occur at different levels and scales of farmland heterogeneity will allow farmers and policy-makers to make better informed decisions and help them reverse the negative effects of landscape simplification.

Mon horaire

Ajouter à Mon Horaire comme Favoris