12 ways to protect the land

STEP 12: Co-operation and collaboration with others.

12 ways to protect the land
Photo: FW Archive
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Working alone, it’s difficult to make a real difference to conservation in your area. The good done on one farm can too easily be undone on another farm. But several farmers working together in a conservancy to promote conservation practice on a number of adjoining farms, can make a difference. We’ll discuss how to form a conservancy in more detail later.

For now, it’s enough to know that working together will make it easier for you to implement many of the ‘desirable dozen’ conservation measures we’ve covered – such as the creation of corridors, control of feral cats and dogs, monitoring of overhead cables and encouraging awareness in staff. Sharing ideas and experiences always leads to greater effectiveness. The practice of sound land-management policies over a large area will benefit the area as a whole and will lead to economic benefits in the long term.

Conservation farming’s 12 steps

To summarise the steps covered:

  • Adopt mixed farming strategies. 
  • Protect natural veld.
  • Protect breeding and roosting sites.
  • Control dogs, cats and livestock.
  • Train farm workers.
  • Use poisons responsibly.
  • Create ecological corridors. 
  • Protect wetlands.
  • Protect watercourses and floodplains.
  • Manage fire appropriately. 
  • Monitor overhead power lines and other potentially dangerous structures.
  • Co-operate with neighbouring farmers.

Key contacts

  • Endangered Wildlife Trust: dedicated to conserving threatened species and ecosystems. Its Conflict Mitigation Programme covers problem animal management, problem birds in agriculture management, integrated pest management, responsible use of agrochemicals, national agricultural pest management, farm worker education and awareness, and combating the negative impacts of agro-chemical misuse. Visit www.ewt.org.za.
  • Powerline collisions: report to Eskom-EWT Strategic Partnership on 086 011 1535 or 011 486 1102.
    Sustainable Energy Africa: promotes sustainable energy approaches and practices. Visit www.sustainable.org.za.
    BirdLife South Africa: visit www.birdlife.org.za.
  • Greenspace: a directory of environmentally preferable products and services available in SA. Visit www.greenspace.co.za.
  • Organic farming: visit www.organicsouthafrica.co.za.
  • South African Crane Conservation Programme: can be accessed via www.ewt.org.za.
  • South African National Biodiversity Institute: visit www.sanbi.org.
  • Wildlife and Environment Society of Southern Africa: visit www.wessa.org.za.
  • Wetlands: visit www.wetlands.org, which has practical guides to conserving and rehabilitating wetlands, or Working for Wetlands at wetlands.sanbi.org.

All contact details correct at time of  being published. Farmer’s Weekly cannot be held responsible for any advice provided by outside sources.

Source: Harrison, J & Young, D, 2010. Farming for the Future: Farming Sustainably with Nature. Animal Demography Unit, University of Cape Town.

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