Landscape Partnerships: Conserving Brazils Atlantic
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Wildlife & Ecosystems

Landscape Partnerships: Conserving Brazils Atlantic

Help us understand and propose the most effective ways to conserve one of the top five biodiversity hotspots in the world: the Atlantic Forest.


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The facts

Why the research is important

Why the research is important

We anticipate that our research will suggest modest adjustments that could dramatically improve the effectiveness of conservation efforts, and we share the outcomes with the local government and community.

Our research brings together social science, biodiversity surveys, ecological niche modelling and land use mapping to guide restoration efforts.

The Atlantic Forest has undergone periods of connectivity with the Amazon and Andean forests, during which species were interchanged, and periods of isolation that led to the evolution of new species. It extends from the Equator into the Southern Temperate Zone with elevations from sea level to 2900 meters, and encompasses a wide range of vegetation types. Seasonal changes increase with distance from the coast, while annual rainfall decreases from 4000 to 1000 millimetres. These factors contribute to the rich biodiversity and large number of endemic species. Research will be carried out at different sites within the Atlantic Forest biome.

Serra do Itajai National Park

The Brazilian government published a decree on 7 June, 2004 creating the Serra do Itajaí National Park of 57,000 ha in the east of the state of Santa Catarina.

An innovative aspect of the research is the combination of different methods and approaches in order to identify conservation priorities. A study of 180 landowners around the Serra do Itajai National Park has been completed and is being analysed in order to understand landowners’ attitudes to ecosystem services and their likely response to recent changes in the Forest Code. High resolution land use mapping has been completed for all the watersheds in the buffer zone around the Park. The maps are being analysed to identify areas at risk of deforestation under the new Forest Code. At the same time biodiversity surveys and ecological niche modelling are being used to identify priority sites for conservation and restoration.

This ambitious approach has attracted the interest of local government authorities, the Park authorities and other stakeholders, as well as academic support from partners including the University of Queensland, Australia. The research team are in discussion with stakeholders to ensure that the outcomes of the research contribute to plans for ecological corridors and for Payment for Ecosystem Services schemes. At the same time they are also interested in developing practical examples of restoration projects based on the findings.

About the research area

Serra do Itajai National Park, Brazil, South America

Daily life in the field

Itinerary

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The Scientists

MEET THE LEAD SCIENTIST

Ana Paula
Giorgi

ABOUT Ana Paula Giorgi

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