HOW FARM­ERS BE­CAME WILDLIFE MAN­AGERS

BBC Wildlife Magazine - - Falklands Caracaras -

The Falk­lands archipelag­o in­cludes more than 500 outer is­lands of vary­ing sizes, with stri­ated caracaras found on a fifth of th­ese. Since the 1870s al­most all avail­able land has been de­voted to large-scale, low­in­ten­sity sheep farming. Most big outer is­lands are owned and run as a farm by a sin­gle fam­ily, who in ef­fect are shep­herd­ing not just sheep but also glob­ally sig­nif­i­cant seabird pop­u­la­tions. Saunders Is­land, for ex­am­ple, is farmed by the Pole-Evans fam­ily and grazed by 5,000 of their sheep, while host­ing up to 16,700 breed­ing pairs of black-browed al­ba­trosses. Their land has thus been given Im­por­tant Bird Area (IBA) sta­tus by BirdLife In­ter­na­tional.

Some Falk­lands farms are unique wildlife lodges.

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