The Biodiversity and Ecosystem Function in Tropical Agriculture (BEFTA) Programme
The BEFTA Programme investigates management strategies to support biodiversity and ecosystem processes in oil palm landscapes. The overall aim of the BEFTA Programme is to test whether increasing landscape structural complexity can enhance oil palm sustainability at little or no cost to yields and profitability. Uniquely, the BEFTA Programme is a collaboration between universities, research institutes, and the oil palm industry, ensuring that management practices are realistic and implementable by land managers.
One of the most striking features in the BEFTA plots is the number of huge termite nests, which are found throughout the plantation. These are often several metres across and over a metre high, plonked down at regular intervals like enormous, squat mole hills in the otherwise flat agricultural land.…