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SOME SOCIOECONOMIC AND ENVIRONMENTAL ASPECTS OF FOREST USE BY LOWLAND FARMERS IN LEYTE, PHILIPPINES AND THEIR IMPLICATIONS FOR AGRICULTURAL DEVELOPMENT AND FOREST MANAGEMENT

Stephen F. Siebert and Jill M. Belsky
Philippine Quarterly of Culture and Society
Vol. 13, No. 4 (December 1985), pp. 282-296
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/29791868
Page Count: 15
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Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.
SOME SOCIOECONOMIC AND ENVIRONMENTAL ASPECTS OF FOREST USE BY LOWLAND FARMERS IN LEYTE, PHILIPPINES AND THEIR IMPLICATIONS FOR AGRICULTURAL DEVELOPMENT AND FOREST MANAGEMENT
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Abstract

Public forests in central Leyte, Philippines provide an important source of annual food crops, perennial cash crops, and rattan and timber to lowland farmers. Household economic dependence upon and uses made of forest resources are associated with relative access to lowland-based activities, especially production of irrigated rice. Households unable to procure sufficient food staples through on or off-farm labor in the lowlands utilize adjacent public forests to cultivate subsistence food crops and to collect forest products. Households able to procure a larger portion of their food staples from lowland-based enterprises depend less upon forests and utilize them primarily for supplementary food production and perennial cash cropping. Current forest farming and forest product collecting activities, especially in annual food-focussed farms, result in erosion, soil degradation and gradual destruction of the indigenous flora. The importance of understanding and incorporating variable household economic dependence on and uses made of forest resources is discussed in relation to the introduction of appropriate strata-specific soil conservation, agroforestry and forest management measures.

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