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Managing Aso Grasslands for Sustainable Agriculture. GIAHS proposal for the Globally Important Agricultural Heritage Systems GIAHS) Initiative

Globally Important Agricultural Heritage Systems (GIAHS)









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    Sado's satoyama in harmony with Japanese crested ibisi. Template for GIAHS proposal Globally Important Agricultural Heritage Systems (GIAHS) Initiative
    Globally Important Agricultural Heritage Systems (GIAHS)
    2016
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    With their ecosystem complexity, the satoyama and the satoumi landscapes in Sado Island harbor a variety of agricultural biodiversity, such as rice, beans, vegetables, potatoes, soba, fruit, grown in paddy fields and other fields, livestock, wild plants and mushrooms in forests, and many seafood in the coastal areas. Rice, beef and persimmon from the Sado are among the best in Japan. The satoyama in Sado was also the last habitat of the wild Japanese crested ibis, a cul-turally valued bird in Ja pan that feeds on paddy fields and roost on the tall trees. The history of rice cultivation and other agricultural practices in Sado can be traced back to the Yayoi period, 1700 years ago. Over the centuries, a diversified landscape has been produced and maintained by the communities inhabiting the island, that have developed locally adapted practices for resource use and management. For example, ingenious water management practices with over 1000 irri-gation ponds to cope with a scarcity of wat er resources coupled with rapid drainage of rainwater into the sea, while creating a rich local culture of rice farming, such as Kuruma Rice Planting listed as national important intangible cultural heritage. Pressures on food production during the gold rush of the Edo period (1603-1868) led to the development of rice terraces on hill slopes, which contribute to the landscape‟s aesthetic appeal as well as to the feeding ground of Japanese crested ibis.
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    Managing Aso Grasslands for Sustainable Agriculture. Globally Important Agricultural Heritage Systems (GIAHS) Initiative Action Plan
    Globally Important Agricultural Heritage Systems (GIAHS)
    2013
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    This Action Plan outlines the efforts and initiative of the people of Aso region for the conservation and promotion of “Managing Aso Grasslands for Sustainable Agriculture,” which is proposed as GIAHS(Globally Important Agricultural Heritage Systems), to FAO.
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    Kuttanad Below Sea Level Farming System (The only system in India that has been practicing rice cultivation below sea level since the past 2 centuries). A Candidate System for Globally Important Agricultural Heritage Systems (GIAHS) Programme, FAO, Rome
    Globally Important Agricultural Heritage Systems (GIAHS)
    2016
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    Kuanad Below Sea-level Farming System (KBSFS) is unique, as it is the only system in India that pracces rice culvaon below sea level. The major land use structure of KBSFS is flat stretches of rice fields in about 50,000 ha, of mostly reclaimed delta swamps. They exist in three landscape elements: Karapadam (upland rice fields), Kayal (wetland rice fields) and Kari (land buried with black coal like materials). The rice fields are popularly known as “Puncha Vayals”. Tradionally KBSFS favour ed only one crop of paddy followed with inland and es-tuarine fish wealth, notably the endemic prawn species, pearl spot and clams. The Puncha Vayals with coconut gardens on the bunds and crisscrossed water canals offer an amazing sight. Farmers of Kuanad developed and mastered the spectacular technique of below sea level culvaon, which has several similaries with the Dutch polder system, over 150 year ago. They made this system unique as it contributes remarkably well to the conservaon of biodiversity and ecosystem services including several livelihood services. The recognion of KBSFS as a Globally Important Agriculture Heritage System will insll pride in the farm families of this area and will lead to the conservaon of this unique below sea level rice-fish farming system. The conservaon and refinement of KBSFS is parcularly important in this era of global warming, leading to a rise in sea level. Island States like Maldives as well as countries like Bangladesh are deep ly interested in replicang the Kuanad system.

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