Designing Silvopastoral Systems For The Amazon: A Framework For The Evaluation Of Native Species

Profile Display Name:

Lucy Dablin

E-mail Address:

Start Year

2015 (Cohort 2)

Research interests:

agriculture, botany, environmental economics, silvopastoral systems, agroforestry, rehabilitation agriculture, restoration ecology, forestry, neotropical biodiversity, solution-based approaches to conservation

Hobbies and interests:
PhD Project
PhD Title

Designing Silvopastoral Systems For The Amazon: A Framework For The Evaluation Of Native Species

Research Theme

Biodiversity and Ecology

Primary Supervisor
Primary Institution


Additional supervisor(s)

Dr Mark Lee (Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew),
Dr William Milliken (Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew),
Dr Alex Monro (Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew),


Silvopasture, where trees are managed in livestock systems for multiple benefits, can offer sustainable intensification within the livestock sector. In the Amazon, silvopasture could be used as a landscape scale rehabilitation strategy to increase connectivity and improve the provision of ecosystem services. Exotic trees used worldwide for fodder production have failed in the Amazon due to high levels of exchangeable aluminium and low base nutrient status. The uptake of silvopastoral systems in the Amazon is, in part, limited by insufficient knowledge of the selection, productivity potential, effect on livestock performance and management of native species in silvopastoral systems. The design and evaluation of silvopastoral systems is a multidisciplinary endeavour. This research will develop a framework for evaluating the silvopastoral potential of native species. The study employs a randomised block field experiment and a minimum of five native species to evaluate practical management aspects including productivity of different tree-grass arrangements, establishment success, impact on soil health, yield in response to frequency and intensity of defoliation and chemical composition of the foliage of native species. Feeding trials will determine species palatability and effect on livestock performance. This research offers an improved understanding of the underexploited plant natural capital of the Amazon.

Policy Impact
Background Reading


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