Once it was believed desertification is caused by livestock mostly cattle, sheep and goats, overgrazing the plants, leaving the soil bare and giving off methane. It was thought they are damaging nature. But quite the opposite they are the important factor in preventing desertification.
“What we had failed to understand was that these seasonal humidity environments of the world, the soil and the vegetation developed with very large numbers of grazing animals, … large herds dung and urinate all over their own food, and they have to keep moving, and it was that movement that prevented the overgrazing of plants, while the periodic trampling ensured good cover of the soil, as we see where a herd has passed.”
“Now, looking at this grassland of ours that has gone dry, what could we do to keep that healthy? And bear in mind, I'm talking of most of the world's land now. Okay? We cannot reduce animal numbers to rest it more without causing desertification and climate change.
We cannot burn it without causing desertification and climate change. What are we going to do? There is only one option, I'll repeat to you, only one option left to climatologists and scientists, and that is to do the unthinkable, and to use livestock, bunched and moving, as a proxy for former herds and predators, and mimic nature.
There is no other alternative left to mankind.”So, you see how crucial this movement can be.
When the flock moves through different lands during migration, the sheep and goats leave their dung and urine throughout their path, and this makes it possible for the soil to absorb and hold the rain and store carbon, and to break down methane and finally to be alive.
Therefore, the only answer to “How we can preserve the nature?” is to use livestock to mimic nature, and the best lifestyle to suit the shepherds when they move their flock is a nomadic lifestyle.
Nowadays, the villagers in Africa are learning how to pass their herds through the lands, exactly like what Iran Nomads do in their seasonal migrations.
They are told to put their animals together into larger herds and plan their grazing to mimic nature, and these points are exactly what Iran Nomads have been doing for centuries. Such measures are proved to be so helpful, as they make the crop fields prepared and consequently there would be a great increase in crop yields as well.
Each year, in spring and autumn, the Nomads of Iran embark on their seasonal migration.
They have been doing this for centuries, and they are the chief stewards of Mt. Zagros nature.