The practical objective of agrosilvopastoral (ASPS) systems, in areas fundamentally devoted to cattle production, is to produce goods, traditionally forestry goods. The Agro-Silvopastoral System (ASPS). terraces. Agroforestry practices in conjunction with pastoral activity have profoundly shaped the present-day landscape. RESEARCH, RE VIEWS, PRACTICES, POLICY AND TECHNOLOGY Agrosilvopastoral Systems: A Practical Approach Toward Sustainable Agriculture Ricardo.

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Sustainable Forest Management (SFM) Toolbox

Agroforestry practices in conjunction with pastoral activity have profoundly shaped the present-day landscape of Serra da estrela. Although reduced in size, these activities still form a main productive component of the economy in this region. Essentially, these systems are a model of production and conservation based on silvi-cultural practices complementary to pre-existing agricultural agrosilvopastofal. The Mediterranean region is characterized by a high variability in bioclimates with variable, often difficult to predict rainfall patterns, demanding the diversification of agricultural as a strategy to increase resilience M.

Agrosilvopastoral systems: a practical approach toward sustainable agriculture.

The low economic viability of wood and crop productions in the Iberian Peninsula has also contributed to a traditional land-use serving a variety of purposes to avail scarce natural resources in the best possible manner while fulfilling a range of necessities.

In Serra da Estrela, high annual variation in temperature, i. It is in such contexts that ASPS have been developed, which can be seen as the traditional human response to factors of unpredictability and low productivity.


Over time, silvopastoral practices have profoundly determined landscapes, often leaving little space for natural occurring vegetation patterns. However Castro considers also that humans did not only shape their environment according to their needs, but that they have also been shaped by it.

In this sense it seems correct to consider the development of ASPS as the result of a co-evolutionary process between humans and their environment. In order to understand and describe the multiple purposes of ASPS it does not suffice to consider the various functions contained within a single land-use type.

The cultivation of crops cereals and vegetables is a labor intensive activity, and therefor such areas tend to be located close to settlements and villages.

Pastures upon which livestock grazes involve more labor-extensive activities as does the forest area. Jansen divides these spatial sequences according to their proximity to human settlements in infields croplands and outfields forest and pasture.

This division is characterized by a net flux of energy from the outfields towards the infields. Pastures are a source of organic material and the zystems grazing on them provide manure for the croplands. Forests provide timber and may serve as a agrosivlopastoral source M.

Plantation of chestnuts provide also an excellent habitat for mushrooms as an additional food source M.


Positive interactions also do take place between forest and animals. The forest provides shelter and a place to rest for livestock Russo ; M. The chestnuts that remained after harvest and leaves of chestnut trees function as an animal food source. In return livestock provides fertilization and prevent encroachment M.

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Since the first half of the 20 th century, subsidized plantations of pine and eucalyptus trees introduced as an alternative to the traditional ASPS started to interfere Jansen Emigration and the introduction of new market forces into the region has profoundly changed role of ASPS of Serra da Estrela. Jansen concludes that traditional land use practices, and as a result the cultural landscapes will almost inevitably xgrosilvopastoral, unless some direct incentive is provided by governmental institutions.

This may provide a renewed opportunity for local population to take up their role in the preservation of a rich landscape with positive effects agrosilvopastoal nature conservation.

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