Brainfood: Pear history, Markets & biodiversity, Conserving small populations, Niche & range, Sustainability in the US, Production forecasts, Sheep differences
- The Pear in History, Literature, Popular Culture, and Art. An oldie, but worth reading just for the analogy between the pear connoisseur and the opera aficionado.
- Effects of market integration on agricultural biodiversity in a tropical frontier. Darien, Panama. Roads are bad for crop diversity, of the interspecific kind at least.
- Conservation genetics and the persistence and translocation of small populations: bighorn sheep populations as examples. Bigger is definitely better.
- Niche breadth predicts geographical range size: a general ecological pattern. Specialist species tend to have small range sizes, making them doubly vulnerable. Trebly so if they have small populations too, I guess (see above).
- Sustainability and innovation in staple crop production in the US Midwest. …depends on on-farm diversity, and here’s three things you can do to promote it, because it ain’t getting any better: collect statistics, redirect subsidies, and think beyond peak yield. Ah but wait, you may have to change the IP system. As you were.
- Yield Trends Are Insufficient to Double Global Crop Production by 2050. For rice, wheat, maize and soybean, current rates of yield increase, if they continue, which I suppose is a big if, what with climate change and all, would mean about 50% production increases by 2050, rather than the supposedly needed 100%.
- Genome-Wide Genetic Diversity and Differentially Selected Regions among Suffolk, Rambouillet, Columbia, Polypay, and Targhee Sheep. Suffolk is different from the others, which we already knew were related. Ah, but now we know where exactly in the genome the differences are.