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Jennifer Lee Johnson
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I study fish, people, and ideas about fish and people (primarially in Uganda)
I study fish, people, and ideas about fish and people (primarially in Uganda)

192 followers
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Winter in Michigan.
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Stone Country of Arnhem: Cultural legacies, fire ecology, and biodiversity change (Trauernicht et al., 2013)
The Arnhem Plateau is over a billion years old, yet fire probably became prevalent in the region with the strengthening of the Asian Monsoon c. 20 Ma. Evolutionary fire regimes likely consisted of less frequent, more intense fires than at present with higher forest cover The Bininj-Kunwok clans of the Stone Country maintain one of the world's oldest continuous cultures and few debate that Aboriginal burning is adaptive and ancient. Sadly, the degradation of this tradition defines the region's next major ecological shift. Recently, the contemporary state controlled fire management of the Kakadu National Park Stone Country (UNESCO world heritage for its unique biodiversity and landscapes) has diverged in recent decades from adjacent Arnhem Land, where Aboriginal fire management has persisted and feral water buffalo have been culturally integrated. The Arnhem Land Stone Country vegetation is now more biodiverse and heterogeneous than UNESCO world heritage Kakadu land. Particularly significant decline in gondwanan species manbinnik (Allosyncarpia ternata) and manlarrh (Callitris intratropica) owing to destructive fires has been observed in the past in both Kakadu and Arnhem Lands. But now, the integration of feral water Buffalo grazing in Aboriginal culture, although it may defy conservation norms, is mitigating destructive fires across large areas in Arnhem land, and is now crucial to maintaining both the ecological and cultural integrity of the region. In their study Trauernicht et al., 2013 are reporting this biocultural transformation.

Further information on this BCLS
- REF 1 Trauernicht, C., Murphy, B. P., Tangalin, N., & Bowman, D. M. (2013). Cultural legacies, fire ecology, and environmental change in the Stone Country of Arnhem Land and Kakadu National Park, Australia. Ecology and evolution, 3(2), 286-297._ - REF 2 _Garlngarr, V, Gurwalwal, B, Bentley-Toon, S, Ens, E and Towler, G. 2011, 'Victor Garlngarr and Barbara Gurwalwal: Caring for country in the Warddeken Indigenous Protected Area, Arnhem Land', Australasian Plant Conservation, vol. 19, no. 4, pp. 3-5  http://www.anbg.gov.au/anpc/apc/19-4_garlngarr.html

Further notes
The water buffalo was introduced to Australia in the early 19th Century. As a feral animal in the country and can be found in Arnhem land and the Top End. Living primarily in freshwater billabongs and marshes, the adult water buffalo can range in size from 300-600kg. The water buffalo feeds on grass and herbs as well as aquatic plants in the wetlands. The female water buffalo are able to produce calves every second year. Young bulls travel in herds of approximately 30 buffalo for their first three years.

Location
https://plus.google.com/116953763573916185536/about?hl=enfplm&utm_source=lmnavbr&utm_medium=embd&utm_campaign=lrnmre&rtsl=1

#minchizu  
#Biocultural  
#BCLScountryside  
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A second episode in one week of the Exploring Environmental History Podcast has been released in the wake of the publication of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change's (IPCC) highly anticipated summary for policymakers in advance of its fifth assessment report.

This special episode of the podcast, explores briefly the origins of the IPCC and, in more detail, the difficult international negotiations that have used the IPCC’s findings since its inception. This historical overview ends with the question whether we can learn anything from previous problems of atmospheric pollution; in this case the Great London Smog and the ozone hole, to tackle global warming.

The podcast concludes with a brief interview of historical climatologist Dagomar Degroot and his response to the summary of the fifth assessment report from the perspective of climate history. Dagomar is a PhD Candidate in environmental history at York University in Toronto, Canada.

Use the link below to access the podcast.
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Biocultural Project in Tanzania: Language as the Missing Ingredient of Biodiversity Conservation (Project Contributor: Samantha Ross - from the Terralingua projects list).

Description of the biocultural diversity and landscapes
The Eastern Arc Mountain Chain in Tanzania is one of the 33 global biodiversity hotspots and provides an ideal opportunity to study biological and linguistic diversity. The range spreads from Southern Kenya to Southern Tanzania and was formed as the Rift Valley took shape creating isolated mountainous blocks replete with unique ecosystems and biodiversity, prompting the moniker “The Galapagos of Africa”. The mountains are home to 200 endemic species of fauna and more than 800 endemic floral species, including the popular African violet (Saintpaulia) and Busy Lizzies (Impatiens), with new species still being discovered. Tanzania is also linguistically diverse, with more than 127 indigenous languages, although Kiswahili is the lingua franca, spoken by 95% of the population. President Julius Nyerere chose Kiswahili as the national language to promote peace, unity, national identity and tribal cohesion after Independence in 1961, as it is a neutral language, not favouring one ethnic group or region over any other. The many vernacular languages are used within ethnically homogenous groups, predominantly in family settings in rural areas.

Threats on biocultural diversity and landscapes
In Tanzania, both the unique linguistic/cultural diversity and biodiversity are under threat. A major challenge concerning the safeguarding of linguistic diversity is the lack of documentation on languages and language speakers, and national linguistic policies that neglect the importance of African languages for development. Kiswahili has the advantage of being neutral, but without support for the other languages it dominates all walks of life – business, education, religion, entertainment and administrative duties. The local languages are not recognized in any official capacity and are actively banned from being used in education or the media. English is an additional threat, since it is the language of global development and cooperation. The views of local people on these processes of modernization and change and how these affect the younger generations reflect current feelings and can offer insights into the future of local languages and culture in the area: ‘Our children don’t want to learn about the plants and the environment because they watch TV and go to school. They don’t have time. They want to get jobs in the big towns.’ ‘Religion stops our young people from learning about their traditional knowledge. They listen to that God and not ours.’ ‘Traditional languages are out of date.’

More details on the project
http://www.terralingua.org/bcdconservation/?p=87

Location of the project
https://plus.google.com/105706862880657312235/about?rfmt=s&hl=en

Want to Donate for other Biocultural projects?
https://donatenow.networkforgood.org/1429852

#Minchizu  
#Biocultural  
#BCLS  
#BCLSlinguistics  
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