Research press release


Nature Communications

Ecology: Using fallow land to grow vanilla increases biodiversity

マダガスカルで休閑地をアグロフォレスト(混農林)として利用してバニラを栽培すれば、生物多様性が高まり、保護区の外での環境保全への道も開けることを示唆した論文が、Nature Communications に掲載される。


今回、Annemarie Wurzたちは、バニラ農業と生物多様性の関係を調べるために、マダガスカルで、樹木類、草本植物、鳥類、両生類、爬虫類、チョウ類、アリ類を調査し、バニラの混農林(森林の中あるいは休閑地に作られる)での収量を調べた。また、地元のバニラ農家に対し、バニラ農業のやり方についての聞き取り調査も行った。Wurzたちは、森林の中に作られたバニラの混農林では、老齢林と比べて種数が23%少なく、固有種数が47%少ないことを明らかにした。これに対して、休閑地をバニラの混農林として利用すると、休閑地と比べて種数が12%多くなり、固有種数が38%多くなることが分かった。


Using fallow land as agroforests for vanilla production in Madagascar increases biodiversity and opens up paths for conservation outside protected areas, suggests a study published in Nature Communications.

Madagascar has lost 44% of its old-growth forests within the past six decades owing to agriculture. The country is one of largest producers of vanilla, globally, despite the plant not being native to Madagascar and has to be pollinated by hand. Vanilla grows on top of tree bark, which requires farmers to plant trees or use existing trees for its production.

To explore the relationship between vanilla farming and forests, Annemarie Wurz and colleagues surveyed trees, herbaceous plants, birds, amphibians, reptiles, butterflies, and ants and yields in vanilla agroforests (forests grown around or among crops) in Madagascar. In addition, they conducted interviews with local vanilla farmers. The authors find that in agroforests established in forests there were 23% fewer species and 47% fewer endemic species overall than found in old-growth forests. However, they found that when fallow land was used for vanilla agroforests there were 12% more species and 38% more endemic species than fallow land without agroforests.

The authors suggest that their findings highlight the potential for vanilla agroforestry to restore biodiversity to degraded and fallow lands. Agroforests planted on fallow land could secure farmers’ livelihoods while protecting Malagasy biodiversity and alleviate pressure on natural forests to be converted into agroforests, they conclude.

doi: 10.1038/s41467-022-30866-8


メールマガジンリストの「Nature 関連誌今週のハイライト」にチェックをいれていただきますと、毎週各ジャーナルからの最新の「注目のハイライト」をまとめて皆様にお届けいたします。