Protect Our Species Month

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During the month of June, Natural Habitats celebrates Protect Our Species Month, an observance that aims to spread awareness about the importance of preserving native species and their ecosystems.

Protecting these species is of the utmost importance to Natural Habitats, as we work closely with independent farmers and plantations in South America to cultivate and harvest 100% organic, sustainable palm oil. When farming in these environments, we are acutely aware of the long history of environmental destruction caused by unethical farming practices, and our team works diligently to implement a vertically integrated supply chain and support local communities through organic farming and environmental preservation strategies.

To honor Protect Our Species Month and the importance it holds, let’s take a look at the native species in the South American regions where our sustainable, ethically sourced palm oil is harvested. Natural Habitats recognizes the necessity of these amazing creatures, which is why we are committed to saving them through our work.

Native Species in Ecuador

Natural Habitats harvests the fruit of oil palm trees in the beautiful country of Ecuador, which is home to a wide array of wildlife and vegetation. Interested in learning more about the species we work to preserve? Keep reading to discover the gorgeous animals and plants in Ecuador!

  • Birds: Palm farms in Ecuador offer valuable habitats and feeding opportunities for a variety of bird species. With Ecuador’s renowned avian diversity, bird species such as toucans, parrots, tanagers, and Oropendolas are among the species attracted to our palm oil farms to sit atop the branches of the oil palm trees.
  • Insects: The flourishing flora and diverse vegetation found on oil palm farms also make them incredibly appealing to butterflies and other pollinators necessary to the region’s plant life. Ecuador boasts numerous butterfly species, including the famous morpho butterflies, which can find fitting habitats both within and near to palm farms.
  • Reptiles and Amphibians: Reptiles and amphibians can benefit from palm farms as well, as they provide shelter and ample grounds for these creatures to forage. Lizards, snakes, frogs, and toads are among the species that can discover suitable microhabitats within the farm’s ecosystem.
  • Small Mammals: Certain small mammal species can also find a happy home in Ecuadorian palm farms. These may include rodents like agoutis and spiny rats, as well as insectivores such as shrews.
  • Invertebrates: Invertebrates, such as beetles, spiders, and ants, thrive in the diverse environments of palm farms. They play crucial roles as decomposers, pollinators, and prey for other animals, contributing to the overall balance of the ecosystem.
  • Sloths: By maintaining a diverse tree canopy, organic farms create ideal environments for sloths to inhabit and explore. This ensures that sloths have access to food sources and adequate shelter, supporting their well-being within the palm farm ecosystem.

How Do We Protect Native Species?

To properly protect the species we listed above and many more, it’s crucial for us to uphold certain standards on our farms. Discover some of the effective practices we follow to preserve the region’s ecosystem.

  • The conservation of biodiversity is a central focus of our USDA Organic Certification, which promotes responsible land management practices that prioritize wildlife protection. To achieve this, we implement buffer zones and safeguard critical habitats within and around our organic plantations. These measures allow native species in Ecuador to coexist and flourish within and around the palm oil farms. Furthermore, our Organic Certification mandates compliance with regulations that strictly prohibit hunting, trapping, or any activities that harm or disrupt the local ecosystem – a necessary aspect of our work.
  • Reforestation and restoration are integral components of our approach to protecting various native species. Our plantations are thoughtfully designed to retain native vegetation and establish wildlife corridors. Moreover, Organic farming practices actively contribute to the rehabilitation of degraded land, transforming previously deforested areas into thriving ecosystems.
  • The cultivation of organic sustainable palm oil (OSPO) embraces environmentally friendly and sustainable farming methods, a huge difference between our efforts and the palm oil harvesting practices of the past. We prioritize natural pest control techniques, minimize the use of agrochemicals, and practice responsible water management. By avoiding excessive pesticide and fertilizer usage, OSPO significantly reduces pollution and its detrimental impact on ecosystems, benefiting both native species and the overall ecological balance.

Celebrate Protect Our Species Month with Natural Habitats!

Through the efforts of Natural Habitats, Palm Done Right, and the many valued partners we work with, we continue to make sustainable, ethical practices the accepted standard within the palm oil industry.

A huge aspect of this standard is the protection of the region’s native species, making Protect Our Species Month a truly meaningful part of our work. Interested in learning more about what it means to make organic products grown in sustainable habitats? Find out more about Natural Habitats and our mission to grow palm oil for good through the philosophy of Palm Done Right.

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