Transforming agricultural areas into agroforestry to restore ecological functions
Flavio Fernandes Barbosa runs a small farm on the Rio Pardo, the border river, in the very southwest of the reserve. The south is completely dominated by cattle breeding; there are hardly any forest fragments left here. Flavio came to the reserve in 1984, and he has been cultivating the farm for 12 years. Cultivation is not limited to annual crops for sale, vegetables, pumpkin and corn are also grown for home consumption. In addition, there are pigs and cattle, and a fish pond completes the stock. Flavio and his family can live off the farm's income. In the future, however, Flavio would like to make the way he farms more sustainable. He has realized that the way of cattle breeding deteriorates the soil fertility and reduces the water availability in the region, which has a negative impact on his agricultural yield. The plan is to replace 16 hectares previously planted with annual crops with an agroforest. Areas on the riverbank are to be reforested. In the long term, agroforestry could also substitute cattle ranching, thus restore ecologically degraded pastureland.
Flavio runs a small farm on the southern border river.