Landscapes - People - Global change

Tag: marginal land

Talk to NSFA Leaders Council

marginalreportcoverAfter two snow days here in Halifax, Simon Greenland-Smith was off to Truro last Wednesday to present the results of our Marginal Land survey (final report now available) to the Council of Leaders of the Nova Scotia Federation of Agriculture (NSFA). The NSFA is our partner on the Species at Risk Partnerships on Agricultural Land (SARPAL) project funded by Environment and Climate Change Canada. The Council of Leaders includes the NSFA executive as well as regional and commodity representatives from across the province. They were interested in the research findings, particularly evidence that Nova Scotia farmers have a strong stewardship ethic.

Marginal land survey now underway

Marginal land survey postcard, the first of a series of mailings a random sample of 1000 Nova Scotia farmers are about to receive

Marginal land survey postcard, the first of a series of mailings a random sample of 1000 Nova Scotia farmers are about to receive

As I write this, Simon Greenland-Smith, extension officer and project manager for our Species at Risk Partnerships on Private Land project, is sitting in the SRES conference room applying address stickers to 1000 pre-survey postcards for our study about farm management on marginal land. This survey is a joint undertaking, funded by Environment Canada (EC) under the program above, but also the Nova Scotia Department of Natural Resources (DNR), and in close collaboration with the Nova Scotia Federation of Agriculture. Knowing how over-surveyed Nova Scotia farmers have been in recent years (and I have been part of that problem, with DNR-sponsored surveys on farm biodiversity and nuisance nature), we are joining together to merge four surveys into one. For this one survey, however, we are going to work hard to get a good response rate. Single mail-out surveys typically only get a 10-20% response rate, which weakens the analysis and conclusions that can be drawn: it is unclear if those who responded are representative of the population of interest. We will use multiple reminders, including this pre-survey postcard to let people know what is coming and why. We hope for a good response rate, sooner than later, because the postage costs for each mailout are non-trivial. Thanks in advance to the kind farmers who help us meet our targets.

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