How Coffee Can Help Save Endangered Bats

Have you heard of the butterfly effect?

"The phenomenon whereby a minute localized change in a complex system can have large effects elsewhere."

For example, the extinction of a single bat species in a country 8,000 miles away. What might happen? It's unknown, but it is preventable.

This theory may be just that, a theory, but what can't be argued is the threat many plant & animal species are under when competing for limited resources with humans.

According to recent article published in the Telegraph India;

"Coffee plantations grown under canopies of native trees have emerged as shelters for bats which are among myriad species worldwide threatened by forest fragmentation, a study from India's Western Ghats has shown."

The problem is the economic pressure for a cheaper crop. This pressure is driving some Indian coffee farmers to transition from Arabica to Robusta. The difference between the two coffee varieties is shade grown vs. open sun. The latter means clear cutting or in other terms, removal of valuable habitat for, in this case, endangered bats.

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The article goes on to say;

"India is among countries where most coffee grown is under native trees," Wordley said. "But, sadly, there is still a trend towards robusta coffee in India - and many arabica planters are moving towards commercial tree species such as eucalyptus for shade which do not provide a good habitat for many (bat) species."

A shift from native plant species to these so called, commercial trees, is at the heart of this current environmental struggle in India and other countries.

That's why we focus on shade grown coffee farms that grow in harmony with the environment.

Scientists & researchers are encouraging and educating these coffee farmers on the benefits to planting native trees in lieu of fast growing commercial trees, but economic pressures may to be too great in the end.

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Time will tell the outcome for these bats, but you can always be sure that our coffee is shade grown, 100% Arabica and that people and the environment are our highest concern.

HT

Telegraph India

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