In the regions where agriculture covers most of the landscape, species rich field margins have an important role in the preservation of biodiversity, plants and fauna. Considering this, the Swiss Confederation plans to introduce «field margins» as new type of ecological compensation area. It is a perennial and linear structure sown with a mixture of native forbs and grasses. It is 3 to 12 meters wide and is made to endure throughout the years without reseeding. To determine the effect of this new structure on vole and mole populations, we studied 36 agricultural fields with either an improved field margin or a conventional field margin or a wildflower strip on the edge. The results show that these three types of field edges are appreciated by voles, but the activity of those rodents inside the field stay low, whatever the edge type. Not a single mole has been observed during this study.
Grass-based beef production is markedly less productive than intensive year-round indoor-housing system-based production. Agroscope experts therefore studied how grass-based farms can produce both economically and in an ecologically sound manner.
Orchard crop spraying using unmanned aerial spraying systems commonly referred to as drones can lead to drift, posing a risk to residents and bystanders. The study shows that the risks arising from this are taken into account by the current registration process.
Trials conducted by FiBL have shown that conversion to organic farming also promotes endangered Red List species such as the carabid beetle species Amara tricuspidata. This species and other species consume seeds of forbs and grasses and thus supports natural weed control.