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Habitat Restoration

Habitat Restoration

Saladero Stu Banner

Soil is the most basic of all natural resources, providing nutrients for plants and soil fauna, soaking up rainwater and acting as a long-term store of atmospheric carbon. Peat is the dominant soil type across the Falkland Islands and is globally the densest store of soil carbon. However, peat is also vulnerable to soil erosion and has become a serious problem on the Falklands. Loss of vegetation exposes the peat to erosive winds and, over many years, many areas have completely lost the peaty topsoil revealing deeper clay soil horizons. Natural plant recolonization is slow on eroded soil due to strong winds, semi-arid climatic conditions and the harsh soil substrate. This in turn can have a negative impact on the soil seed bank and growth and the establishment of any emerging plants. Furthermore, there are currently no native seeds commercially available for restoration; only non-native pastoral species are available to landowners and farmers. As part of a 2-year Darwin funded project, we are aiming to enhance the capacity for habitat restoration in the Falklands by using native seeds. This work is a collaborative effort with Millennium Seed Bank Partnership, Royal Botanic Gardens Kew and the Natural History Museum in the UK. You can follow the progress of our Habitat Restoration Officer’s activities on this webpage and learn more about Falkland Islands peatlands, native seeds and restoration.


    The overall objectives of the Habitat Restoration project include:

  • Undertake a large-scale trial to investigate the effectiveness of native plant seeds and restorative techniques on different eroded substrates (including bare clay, peat, sand and failed re-seeds).

  • Build upon previous seed collections and increase the native seed stock by collecting more seeds from West Falklands, which will be cleaned and processed by our project collaborators Millennium Seed Bank.

  • Create a native seed hub where seeds will be reared locally at Stanley Growers, and cleaned and processed on the Islands for local small-scale restoration.

  • Provide guidance for best practice for landowners and farmers undertaking restoration using native seeds.

Download Seed Collecting in the Falkland Islands