march, 2021

18mar11:00 am12:00 pm“No farm is an island": biodiversity in prairie agro-ecosystems11:00 am - 12:00 pm PST


Event Details

“No farm is an island”: biodiversity in prairie agro-ecosystems

By: Dr. Samuel Robinson, University of Calgary

March 18th 11am PST

Presentation Summary and Speaker Bio

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Presentation Summary:

Conservation is often thought of as something that only happens on pristine undeveloped land, but this represents only a tiny fraction of land worldwide. Agricultural land, on the other hand, represents over 35% of the land on earth, but is often thought of as a wasteland with little biodiversity. I argue that this dichotomy is unhelpful, and that “agro-ecosystems” represent an opportunity for conserving biodiversity while also maintaining food production. Finally, I will outline some few key questions that our lab is studying in prairie agro-ecosystems: 1) Can non-crop land (grasslands, trees, wetland) act as reservoirs for beneficial insects? 2) Do “messier fields” have higher yields? Can unprofitable regions of fields be used for increasing farmland biodiversity?

Dr. Samuel Robinson is a postdoctoral associate at the University of Calgary, where he studies the relationships between crop yield, biodiversity, and landscape structure. He hails from White Rock, BC, and received his B.Sc. and M.Sc. from the University of British Columbia where he studied pollination of high Arctic plants on Ellesmere Island before moving to Alberta to do his Ph.D on canola pollination at the University of Calgary. He is interested in agriculture and ecology, and how the two disciplines can cooperate to solve the problem of providing food to a growing world population while also
preserving biodiversity.


Meadow with natural grasses and flowers.


(Thursday) 11:00 am - 12:00 pm

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