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11.06.: Guest lecture: Biodiversity in farming systems: How can real-world agriculture promote biodiversity, without compromising yield?

Scherber Christoph

Prof. Dr. Christoph Scherber

Head of Centre for Biodiversity Monitoring (zbm),  Zoological Research Museum, Bonn


Classical biodiversity experiments have shown that increasing plant diversity can positively affect biodiversity at other trophic levels both above and below the ground in terrestrial ecosystems. However, it has remained largely unexplored how biodiversity can be maintained or even increased in real-world farming systems (apart from off-field components such as flowering strips). Imagine a large-scale farm where monocultures stretch to the horizon: Is there any way to improve biodiversity in such a setting? In my talk I will provide examples from agricultural experiments manipulating temporal and spatial crop diversity where crop-associated biodiversity and yield were measured. I will show that crop identity is an important driver of agrobiodiversity, and that spatial cropping system diversification (intercropping) is a potentially powerful way of promoting both in-field biodiversity and yield.

Crop RotationIntercroppingIntercropping2Intercropping3Webex-Details:
Meeting number (access code): 121 335 5967
Meeting password: pPWR9b6C4Vm

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Photographs: © Christoph Scherber I © University of Münster