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Simply Sustainable Biodiversity

Six Simple Steps to help improve biodiversity on your land

Linking Environment and Farming (LEAF)
November 2015
Creative Commons Licence
Farmer experience

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Resource explained: 

Proactive on-farm conservation management and constructive protection of natural resources are essential in helping healthy wildlife populations to flourish and enrich your crops and the environment. This booklet has been designed to help you monitor, manage, maintain, protect and enhance biodiversity through developing an effective on-farm management strategy and adopting Integrated Farm Management (IFM) principles. Based on ‘Six Simple Steps,’ it outlines practical ways you can manage your land for food production and wildlife, improving your farm’s contribution to the environment. It will help you locate areas on your farm where you can improve habitats and their quality over time. It outlines the functions of biodiversity and takes you through the six steps of: identifying habitats (monitoring), identifying key species, managing farm land sympathetically, and being proactive in your management of habitats and species (management), enhancing existing habitats and populations (enhancement), and working with others.

Findings & recommendations: 
  • An emphasis on habitats needs to be core within farm business priorities in order to ensure that biodiversity is not neglected or marginalised.
  • The introduction covers the essential and varied role biodiversity plays in food production.
  • The first step to sustainable biodiversity is to take full stock of where and what habitats you have available.
  • Once habitats are mapped, collecting information on what species currently reside there is an important step to protecting them and enhancing other species.
  • It is important that you:
    • Manage farm operations to ensure biodiversity is considered across the whole farm;
    • be pro-active in your management of habitats and species;
    • and concentrate on enhancing existing habitats and populations.
  • The booklet encourages working with other farmers to help create larger and more connected habitats and working with local communities and schools to help monitor species.
  • Each step in the booklet is accompanied by a biodiversity scoring system that you can use to complete a table at the back that will help you assess how well you are managing biodiversity and develop a more sustainable biodiversity strategy for your business. You are encouraged to revisit your score on an annual basis.

Simply Sustainable Biodiversity