The Farm as Natural Habitat

What is the relationship between the grocery list and the endangered species list? This question is explored in The Farm as Natural Habitat: Reconnecting Food Systems with Ecosystems, published in April 2002 by Island Press.

LSP's Associate Director, Dana Jackson, edited this book of readings with her daughter Laura Jackson, Associate Professor of Biology at the University of Northern Iowa. LSP staff members George Boody and Brian DeVore contributed chapters, as did five other LSP members.

This book is designed to open a broad discussion about restoring a relationship between farming and the natural world that improves the sustainability of both. It asserts that wildlife habitat destruction will continue as long as society allows agricultural lands to be ecological sacrifice zones. The book describes farms that are natural habitats and argues that the landscape could be dominated by stewardship farms, not factory farms, if appropriate incentives through the market and public policy supported them.

Table of Contents for The Farm as Natural Habitat

Part 1 Agriculture as Ecological Sacrifice

Chapter 1: The Farm as a Natural Habitat-Dana Jackson
Chapter 2: Nature's Backlash-Brian DeVore
Chapter 3: The Farm, The Nature Preserve and the Conservation Biologist-Laura Jackson

Part 2 Restoring Nature on Farms

Chapter 4: Return to Coon Valley-Arthur (Tex) Hawkins
Chapter 5: Reading the Land Together-Buddy Huffaker
Chapter 6: When Farmers Shut off the Machinery-Brian DeVore
Chapter 7: Stewards of the Wild-Brian DeVore
Chapter 8: Why Do They Do It?-Brian DeVore

Part 3 Ecosystem Management and Farm Lands

Chapter 9: Nature and Farming in Great Britain-Heather Robertson and Richard Jefferson
Chapter 10: Restoring Prairie Processes to Farm Lands-Laura Jackson
Chapter 11: Sustaining Production with Biodiversity-Nick Jordan
Chapter 12: Conservation and Agriculture as Neighbors-Judith Soule
Chapter 13: Integrating Wetland Habitat with Agriculture-Carol Shennan and Collin Bode

Part 4 Steps Toward Agroecological Restoration

Chapter 14: Composing a Landscape-Rhonda Janke
Chapter 15: After the Deluge: Integrated Watershed Management in the Red River Valley-Cheryl Miller
Chapter 16: A Refined Taste in Natural Objects-Beth Waterhouse
Chapter 17: Food and Biodiversity-Dana Jackson
Chapter 18: Agriculture as a Public Good-George Boody