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Bird Friendly Beef (1 Viewer)

Farnboro John

Well-known member
What do you suggest then John?



Chosun :gh:


P.S. I should have stated the word egalitarian as well - buy you know, in Indigenous culture that's just taken as read.

Obviously, restrictions on breeding that must lead to reduction in human population. Since we all believe in equality, they must apply to all populations without discrimination. Have a nice day.

John
 

Chosun Juan

Given to Fly
Australia - Aboriginal
80% is already a massive improvement on the active degradation of so many places. Given the momentum further improvements will surely come.
Mike - yes I agree ~80% is better than the present situation headed for zero. :eek!:

That 80% though requires ~30% of land on the property as reserved for conservation. About 20% could be 'crash grazed' for a few days at a time per year outside of core breeding and seeding times etc, however research shows that the less of that the better. That 80% is a bit of a hard is limit since it runs into things like required maximum distance between essential vegetation for connectivity for certain species that can't be met on the remaining 70% of the property.

An interesting conversation featuring both Charles Massy and Allan Savory on stage together, although even these gurus need to brush right up on their indigenous knowledge. ;)
https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=K1_VZBaI2lU





Chosun :gh:
 

Muppit17

Well-known member
With yet another climate conference rolling around, the philosophies and work of Alan Savory are interesting in that presumably the birds we treasure evolved alongside these herds of wild herbivores and managed to breed and survive ok. The notion of 'Bird Friendly Beef' would have to address the same issues ......
https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=gzfWGDCi9qc





Chosun :gh:

I have just returned from Namibia, which has the same issues that Alan mentions. However in talking to some farmers there their solution is beyond those mentioned by Alan.

In Erongo, they have removed fences between farms and destocked the cattle entirely. In the place of the cattle, they have restocked with native species. This has increased the tonnage per hectare of meat, decreased the soil erosion and increased the resilience to drought.

Furthermore, tourist will pay to stay and see the animals, and they sell trophy rights for some animals.

Habitat has improved and farmers incomes have improved.

The meat is sold as generic "game" and is often superior in quality (taste & tenderness) to locally produced beef.
 

Chosun Juan

Given to Fly
Australia - Aboriginal
I have just returned from Namibia, which has the same issues that Alan mentions. However in talking to some farmers there their solution is beyond those mentioned by Alan.

In Erongo, they have removed fences between farms and destocked the cattle entirely. In the place of the cattle, they have restocked with native species. This has increased the tonnage per hectare of meat, decreased the soil erosion and increased the resilience to drought.

Furthermore, tourist will pay to stay and see the animals, and they sell trophy rights for some animals.

Habitat has improved and farmers incomes have improved.

The meat is sold as generic "game" and is often superior in quality (taste & tenderness) to locally produced beef.

Native herbivores sounds like a win-win solution :t:




Chosun :gh:
 

Chosun Juan

Given to Fly
Australia - Aboriginal
If you want to save the world, veganism isn’t the answer

This system is based on rewilding and free roaming herds ....
https://www.theguardian.com/comment...f9VASpLDytprYNToMSYWzP1IFDgQl5MXI-m_gCOJDFoTg

Such an agricultural practice was the ruination of the Australian landscape. I don't think free roaming herds in the absence of predatory pressure could be good for any landscape long term, but I would be very interested to know:-

* How British /European soils differ from ours such that continual disturbance by these hooved animals can be good for the soil and ecosystem long term .... ? :cat:

* Given that in the absence of external influences the animals will always go to their preferred vegetation first and camp in preferred areas - how does this not wear these areas out long term, or lead to extinction of the most palatable species and reduced biodiversity .... ?






Chosun :gh:
 

Mysticete

Well-known member
United States
In a large chunk of the world, ungulates were the dominant herbivores, so ecosystems are pre-adapted to them. As long as you don't pen them into "small" areas or keep them at unreasonable densities, it can work. Australia never had ungulates, so presumably that is the problem right there. Now they did have plenty of large herbivores, but the environments they inhabited are so far removed from the environment that the first Australian European settlers arrived to that they are not really comparable.
 

Chosun Juan

Given to Fly
Australia - Aboriginal
Destructive farming is the issue — not whether you eat meat or vegetables

https://www.businesslive.co.za/bd/l...vK4kTJvOF86udv_i0pGkJKIx9ISsGZYuPuWjJ0pNyhFLA

Even then, Regenerative Agriculture still needs to allocate ~ 30% of land area (according to McIntyre et al.) to untouched natural biodiversity habitats ........ It's not at all as simple as the reductionist simplification of swapping hamburgers for vegeburgers ...... :brains: :cat:




Chosun :gh:
 

Chosun Juan

Given to Fly
Australia - Aboriginal
Saturated trees and carbon rationing

Interesting ..... in terms of the eternal dance between forests and grasslands, the effects of man (not to mention his crucially unmentioned impacts on the hydrological cycle) , science, knowledge, and perhaps effort expended on solutions to problems which may or may not exist.

The follow on from that of course, is equity, unwelcome control and costs to the individual, and distortion of markets.

Interesting also for grazing lands (especially resumed former woodlands) and carbon sequestration and the all important soil building, moisture retention, and wildlife habitat.

https://www.abc.net.au/radionational/programs/futuretense/carbon,-climate/12141174







Chosun :gh:
 
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MKinHK

Mike Kilburn
Hong Kong
When we were kicked out of Eden - we didn't get a re-entry pass

To your original point about going beyond 80% restoration Chosun - it does not seem likely to me that going much beyond that would be possible if introducing a major new component - i.e. hard-hooved cattle - where they never were before has any likelihood of reaching 100% restoration - its too big a change - especially in a specialised habitat. Even without the cattle it may not be possible depending on what has been lost that we perhaps don't know about.

On the other hand restoration of e.g. prairie or other habitats which did see large concentrations of herbivores it might be more viable to return closer to the original state.
 

Mysticete

Well-known member
United States
To your original point about going beyond 80% restoration Chosun - it does not seem likely to me that going much beyond that would be possible if introducing a major new component - i.e. hard-hooved cattle - where they never were before has any likelihood of reaching 100% restoration - its too big a change - especially in a specialised habitat. Even without the cattle it may not be possible depending on what has been lost that we perhaps don't know about.

On the other hand restoration of e.g. prairie or other habitats which did see large concentrations of herbivores it might be more viable to return closer to the original state.

I would have to imagine that invasive plants are going to be the biggest issue with trying to return thing to a "natural" baseline. At least cattle and other ungulates are big and physically easy to eliminate.
 

THE_FERN

Well-known member
In a large chunk of the world, ungulates were the dominant herbivores, so ecosystems are pre-adapted to them. As long as you don't pen them into "small" areas or keep them at unreasonable densities, it can work. Australia never had ungulates, so presumably that is the problem right there. Now they did have plenty of large herbivores, but the environments they inhabited are so far removed from the environment that the first Australian European settlers arrived to that they are not really comparable.

Not read the whole thread in detail so some nice random thoughts which are probably out of order:
  • Like earlier poster, I've always been unclear why Australians don't farm kangaroos and other marsupials if they're interested in sustainability and meat. Suspect you can attain high densities with semi-natural conditions if you just give supplementary water
  • Although in N Am, Asia and esp. Africa the flora has evolved to survive with ungulates (Oz flora famously hasn't: marsupials are soft-footed and mostly light weight), I wonder what role the grazers have in "climax", "unmodified" habitats in many of these places. I think the consensus was that much of Europe had savanna-like appearance when I was at university for example: kept open by grazers. But reading up on European bison recently persuaded me this wasn't the case: major impacts of herbivores were probably limited to particular areas such as near water. If so, this has implications for stock densities etc
  • It's obvious that the large expenses of many threatened habitats we see are the result of artificial practices such as grazing
  • In S Am at least, the returns you get from stock may well be far less than you'd get from other forms of agriculture. A reason cattle are popular is you need so few employees to manage them and they require little supervision. So you can run 2,000 head with <3 people (forget actual no. but based on actual example). You can live in city and only visit ranch once every 6 weeks: so fairly minimal effort
  • I'm persuaded that if we really must have meat from cattle then intensive pen production is the short term way to go. Longer term, tissue culture or "lab" meat. Obviously the former ignores animal welfare concerns.
  • Broadly, talk of "sustainable" is hogwash. To evaluate re-wilding etc we have to decide what we're trying to maximise (the objective) and whether the proposal will achieve this.
 

THE_FERN

Well-known member
I would have to imagine that invasive plants are going to be the biggest issue with trying to return thing to a "natural" baseline. At least cattle and other ungulates are big and physically easy to eliminate.

Yes, except that Oz is huge... Maybe drones offer something cheaper than choppers, if equipped with guns...

And then there's the rabbits
 

Chosun Juan

Given to Fly
Australia - Aboriginal
Putting it all together

To your original point about going beyond 80% restoration Chosun - it does not seem likely to me that going much beyond that would be possible if introducing a major new component - i.e. hard-hooved cattle - where they never were before has any likelihood of reaching 100% restoration - its too big a change - especially in a specialised habitat. Even without the cattle it may not be possible depending on what has been lost that we perhaps don't know about.

On the other hand restoration of e.g. prairie or other habitats which did see large concentrations of herbivores it might be more viable to return closer to the original state.
Mike - the 80% I spoke of is in relation to bird species possible, given sufficient natural environmental connectivity using a particular woodland restoration model. That model (McIntyre et al.) is 10% fenced off conserved natural habitat + 20% fenced connected natural (or restored) habitat which may see occasional primary production use - short term (a few days annually) crash grazing, etc + the remaining 70% balance of the land area for productive primary production.

This is applicable even with introduced grazing animals - provided they are well managed.This requires:-
* keeping them out of permanent and ephemeral wetlands, and watercourses /riparian areas and headwaters. This has not been done well historically and is a major cause of a large part of the damage done since invasion (destroying reed beds etc ruined the hydrological functioning in as little as a decade, kick started erosion and drying of the land). It would require stock proof fencing and pumped to remote trough watering.
* keeping them moving according to holistic rotational and regenerative grazing principles. This mimics the short term only grazing pressure and constant moving to fresh areas as brought about by natural predatory pressures.
* keeping them off other fragile ecosystems /soils /slopes etc. This requires some pretty fancy farm planning and fencing.
* stocking capacity according to seasonal conditions, with maintenance of a minimum ground cover level as the absolute overriding consideration and driver.

I believe some additional bird % species restoration /preservation is possible beyond this by also applying cutting edge techniques such as - old growth augmentation (hollows, structure, nesting sites/ materials, raptor perches etc), mimicry, and timelines acceleration, pasture cropping, multi-species grazing, inter-shrub-row cropping/grazing, natural sequence farming wetland restoration etc, composting, agroforestry, integrated pest management, Indigenous knowledge and management - pyrolytic cultural burns, dreaming, singing the land, etc, and even agrivoltaics.

I will post a few links after detailing some of these .....

I truly believe (and have demonstrated) that not only is it possible to turn this ship around - but vast improvements can be made.





Chosun :gh:
 

Chosun Juan

Given to Fly
Australia - Aboriginal
I would have to imagine that invasive plants are going to be the biggest issue with trying to return thing to a "natural" baseline. At least cattle and other ungulates are big and physically easy to eliminate.
Australia has some well structured, deep, fertile volcanic based soils enriched by complex old growth grassy box-gum woodlands prior to most of it being cleared ('opened up', 'improved', 'developed'). These are the equal of anywhere in the world and should be able to withstand even hard hoofed herbivores.

What we now lack (after 10's of 1000's of years of co-existence with man) is large carnivorous predators. The dingo (and the crocodile) is all that is left (and even they have been largely fenced out and deterred from their natural roles - even outright persecuted). Consequently, in the absence of this pressure to 'move along' cattle and sheep wrecked the fragile wetland and water course system in as little as a decade from arrival in an area.

Other areas have highly erodable podzolic soils that can't really withstand this type of pressure and the attendant clearing.

Hard hooved herbivores require incredibly close and detailed management as I detailed above. Sadly we have hundreds of years of this not happening, and even now the movement is quite nascent .....






Chosun :gh:
 

Chosun Juan

Given to Fly
Australia - Aboriginal
Not read the whole thread in detail so some nice random thoughts which are probably out of order:
  • Like earlier poster, I've always been unclear why Australians don't farm kangaroos and other marsupials if they're interested in sustainability and meat. Suspect you can attain high densities with semi-natural conditions if you just give supplementary water
  • Although in N Am, Asia and esp. Africa the flora has evolved to survive with ungulates (Oz flora famously hasn't: marsupials are soft-footed and mostly light weight), I wonder what role the grazers have in "climax", "unmodified" habitats in many of these places. I think the consensus was that much of Europe had savanna-like appearance when I was at university for example: kept open by grazers. But reading up on European bison recently persuaded me this wasn't the case: major impacts of herbivores were probably limited to particular areas such as near water. If so, this has implications for stock densities etc
  • It's obvious that the large expenses of many threatened habitats we see are the result of artificial practices such as grazing
  • In S Am at least, the returns you get from stock may well be far less than you'd get from other forms of agriculture. A reason cattle are popular is you need so few employees to manage them and they require little supervision. So you can run 2,000 head with <3 people (forget actual no. but based on actual example). You can live in city and only visit ranch once every 6 weeks: so fairly minimal effort
  • I'm persuaded that if we really must have meat from cattle then intensive pen production is the short term way to go. Longer term, tissue culture or "lab" meat. Obviously the former ignores animal welfare concerns.
  • Broadly, talk of "sustainable" is hogwash. To evaluate re-wilding etc we have to decide what we're trying to maximise (the objective) and whether the proposal will achieve this.

Thanks for taking the time to comment.

Taking your points one by one:-

* Farming marsupials - probably vastly easier to conceive of than actually do ! Herding, harvesting, etc are all supremely difficult problems to solve. In the absence of natural predatory pressure, they can also readily over graze areas. I know all too well the damage they can do to revegetation projects and natural regeneration. Even 2m high trees are not immune as their frequent fighting can readily turn them into matchsticks !

* Role of grazers - under natural circumstances they would have been integral to forming balanced mosaics of habitat. They also would have been hunted. What is not mentioned is the role of Indigenous people in significantly aiding soil fertility through careful cultural management - pyrolytic fire and soil building etc.

* Threatened Habitats - yes caused by the vicious circle of inappropriate grazing, the destruction to hydrology /warercourses this caused, erosion and drying of the land. Exceedingly poorly managed since invasion.

* Returns - grazing /pasture cropping can be a very low input cost, very low risk regenerative, sustainable process - if managed well. I think the future largely consists of this if done properly.

* The future - largely Regenerative - though I think there is room for sustainable (power, water, feed) high intensity concentrated feedlots on higher, barren ground, that is well connected to transport routes.

* Far from 'hogwash' I think 'sustainable' and 'regenerative' are the only real games in town.

The 'objective' is to build soil and environmental health - increasing biodiversity - something Indigenous people have successfully managed for thousands of years.






Chosun :gh:
 

Chosun Juan

Given to Fly
Australia - Aboriginal
No Kill Cropping /Grazing

The wonderful Bruce Maynard - coinventor of 'Pasture Cropping' :t:

This clip gives a real insight into the types of future agricultural landscapes and practices - well worth your time - this is gold !

Bruce and Roz Maynard- The Lazy Farmers from Narromine
https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=FKjbWrDWHjU
https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=G2zMG371npM


No Kill Cropping principles explained
https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=KB82qQWxJek


These principles and techniques when combined with the McIntyre model, and other measures as I have mentioned is what will make restorative, sustainable, future agriculture able to offer 80%+ birdlife and biodiversity outcomes compared to the 10-30% we experience now and are headed for.






Chosun :gh:
 
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