ABSTRACT

This chapter examines the meaning of biodiversity. It focuses on biodiversity preservation frequently, and naively, divorced from the related issue of agriculture as a landscape modification. It prioritizes socio-economic factors over biological processes of biodiversity maintenance, frequently a result of ignorance of those biological processes on the part of development initiative architects. Associated biodiversity is normally thought of when conservation issues are discussed, and it is closely associated with several topics of interest to pure ecological and evolutionary theory. The consideration of these two well-known ecological theories, meta-population theory and island biogeography theory, indicates that developmental programs that take seriously conservation must focus on the quality of the matrix rather than on the conventional strategy of protected areas. A recent trend within the small-farming sector has been to move to more ecologically oriented agriculture, promoted by a combination of concerns ranging from the health of producers, to the health of consumers, to the health of the environment.