The Unique Biodiversity of Rice Fields on The Rice Stuff Podcast

Number 5 superimposed over photo of combine and grain cart in mature rice field
You're not the only one who loves U.S. rice
Sep 08, 2020
ARLINGTON, VA – There is no crop that provides the wildlife habitat rice fields do – from birds and waterfowl to invertebrates and even now fish – more than 220 species call rice fields home.  The great opportunities for the planet and the challenges for growers associated with this impressive fact is the topic for the new episode of The Rice Stuff podcast.

California rice farmer and chair of the USA Rice Conservation Committee Leo LaGrande and Ducks Unlimited’s Director of Conservation Programs Dr. Scott Manley join hosts Lydia Holmes and Steve Linscombe to talk biodiversity of rice fields and why that makes U.S. rice so special.

“We’re looking for the win-win-win situation and rice represents one of those where you have food that is produced to feed the world, you have a crop that is environmentally friendly and provides wildlife habitat for a myriad of species, and also at the end of the day generates a wonderful economy for rural areas,” explained Manley.

Linscombe shared some of the dozens of bird species he has encountered in rice fields over his lifetime and LaGrande talked about the unique new salmon project going on in California fields.

“Rice has such a great environmental story to tell, and this is just one aspect of it, but it’s so important to get this information out there,” said Holmes.  “I was glad we could dedicate an episode to this but even so, we just scratched the surface and will return to it for sure.”

New episodes of The Rice Stuff are published on the second and fourth Tuesday of every month and can be found on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify, and Stitcher. 

All episodes and additional information can be found on the podcast’s dedicated website at  The site includes a “Podcast 101” section on the “About” page for people new to the medium and a means to reach out to the show hosts and guests via the “Talk to Us” button.