The Quest to Conserve Rare Breeds: Setting the Record Straight
by Lawrence Alderson
Since the middle of the twentieth century the world has witnessed a succession of political and social disruptions. Globalisation, technological advancement, climate change, human migration, war and conflict – all have caused major worldwide upheavals. In this light, it’s unsurprising that conservation of rare breed animals has been neglected. Yet the preservation of these genetic resources – this biological diversity – is an essential ingredient of sustainable life on Earth, and not something we can afford to lose. This book challenges often repeated ‘facts’ about livestock farming, straight from the horse’s mouth. In it, rare breeds expert Lawrence Alderson CBE argues for a reasoned and evidence-based approach from political and public circles. Correcting misconceptions as he goes, he recounts the creation and development of the rare breed conservation movement, addresses extinctions and genetic safe-guarding measures, and considers where we go from here. Challenged as we are by climate change, sustainability and feeding the world, perhaps it is these endangered animals that hold the answer – perhaps with them, we can adapt to our changing environment and see a way forward to a more certain future.