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Adoption, use and perception of Australian acacias around the world


Kull, CA and Shackleton, CM and Cunningham, PJ and Ducatillon, C and Dufour-Dror, J and Esler, KJ and Friday, JB and Gouveia, AC and Griffin, AR and Marchante, E and Midgley, SJ and Pauchard, A and Rangan, H and Richardson, DM and Rinaudo, T and Tassin, J and Urgenson, LS and von Maltitz, GP and Zenni, RD and Zylstra, MJ, Adoption, use and perception of Australian acacias around the world, Diversity and Distributions, 17, (5) pp. 822-836. ISSN 1366-9516 (2011) [Refereed Article]

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DOI: doi:10.1111/j.1472-4642.2011.00783.x


Aim  To examine the different uses and perceptions of introduced Australian acacias (wattles; Acacia subgenus Phyllodineae) by rural households and communities. Location  Eighteen landscape-scale case studies around the world, in Vietnam, India, Réunion, Madagascar, South Africa, Congo, Niger, Ethiopia, Israel, France, Portugal, Brazil, Chile, Dominican Republic and Hawai‘i. Methods  Qualitative comparison of case studies, based on questionnaire sent to network of acacia researchers. Information based on individual knowledge of local experts, published and unpublished sources. Results  We propose a conceptual model to explain current uses and perceptions of introduced acacias. It highlights historically and geographically contingent processes, including economic development, environmental discourses, political context, and local or regional needs. Four main groupings of case studies were united by similar patterns: (1) poor communities benefiting from targeted agroforestry projects; (2) places where residents, generally poor, take advantage of a valuable resource already present in their landscape via plantation and/or invasion; (3) regions of small and mid-scale tree farmers participating in the forestry industry; and (4) a number of high-income communities dealing with the legacies of former or niche use of introduced acacia in a context of increased concern over biodiversity and ecosystem services. Main conclusions  Economic conditions play a key role shaping acacia use. Poorer communities rely strongly on acacias (often in, or escaped from, formal plantations) for household needs and, sometimes, for income. Middle-income regions more typically host private farm investments in acacia woodlots for commercialization. Efforts at control of invasive acacias must take care to not adversely impact poor dependent communities.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:Acacia; biological invasions; economic development; introduced species; livelihoods; natural resource management; subsistence harvesting
Research Division:Agricultural, Veterinary and Food Sciences
Research Group:Forestry sciences
Research Field:Forestry fire management
Objective Division:Plant Production and Plant Primary Products
Objective Group:Forestry
Objective Field:Hardwood plantations
UTAS Author:Griffin, AR (Professor Rod Griffin)
ID Code:75915
Year Published:2011
Web of Science® Times Cited:135
Deposited By:Plant Science
Deposited On:2012-02-20
Last Modified:2012-04-17
Downloads:7 View Download Statistics

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