Kansas City Star: Conservationists team up with ranchers, loggers
... Across the nation, conservation groups in partnership with ranchers are using cattle to restore native plant species by grazing invasive grasses. Other groups are working with fishermen to fish sustainably, and using logging and mining profits to pave way for forest and salmon restoration.
"There's been a shift to working more with industries," said Lynn Huntsinger, professor of rangeland ecology at the University of California, Berkeley. "This is a human landscape. We need food, we need wood, people are crazy about eating salmon. Working closely with those who produce on the land offers opportunities for ... teaching them about conservation."
In the past, conservationists relied on purchasing land and setting it aside, away from human activity. Logging, ranching or mining were seen as harmful and incompatible with preservation.
But in recent years, the use of conservation easements to retire development rights on private land has exploded. The easements, which cost a fraction of what it would cost to buy the property, allow landowners to continue working the land. ...