Slash-and-burn agriculture

Slash-and-burn agriculture

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Credit: DR MORLEY READ/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Slash-and-burn clearing. Worker supervising the burning of vegetation to clear a field. This is to clear the land and provide a fertile ash in which to grow crops. After a few years, the fertility of the land declines, and this shifting cultivation has to move on to clear another area of land. In a lightly populated area, a fallow period of twenty years or more allows the land to recover. However, in areas with expanding populations, such as parts of the Amazon, the practice is extended into, and contributes to the destruction of, the rainforest. Migrants farmers may also burn deforested areas to grow crops there, preventing regeneration of the trees. Photographed in Ecuador.

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Keywords: agricultural, agriculture, american, ash, ashes, burning, charred, cleared, clearing, cultivation, damage, deforestation, ecuador, ecuadorean, environment, environmental, farm, farmed, farmer, farming, field, geography, land use, regeneration, shifting, slash and burn, slash-and-burn, smoke, south america, tropical, tropics, worker

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