TRADITIONAL AGRICULTURAL SYSTEMS AND BIODIVERSITY IN THE PACIFIC ISLANDS

Harley I. Manner

University of Guam, Mangilao 96923, Guam

Although modernization and development is changing the pattern of subsistence in most islands of the Pacific Basin, traditional agriculture still plays a significant role in their economies. Most of these traditional agricultural systems are integrated into anilior dependent upon the structure and functioning of their forest ecosystems. These systems of agriculture vary in the extent of ecological disruption, including biodiversity. This paper discusses the range of traditional agricultural systems in the Pacific and the ways, people and their agricultural systems have affected the biodiversity and other ecological characteristics of their forests. Particular attention is paid to the role of forests in slash and burn agriculture, traditional Micronesian agroforestxy, and atoll agriculture. Some of the variables to he discussed include the extent of ecological disruption air the viability and diversity of forest ecosystems, and the role of indigenous and introduced species in these systems, to name a few.

 

Abstract from: 43rd Symposium of the International Association for Vegetation Science, July 23-28, 2000, Nagano, Japan.


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Last Updated: 08/18/00

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