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News Article | December 8, 2016
Site: www.eurekalert.org

Scientists from WCS (Wildlife Conservation Society), The Nature Conservancy, and several partners in Brazil and Peru have produced a geographic information system (GIS) "roadmap" to help guide conservation efforts at large scale in the Amazon River basin, a region roughly the size of the United States. The new spatial framework--created with several major data sets and GIS technology -- is made up of a new hydrological and river basin classification, along with various spatial analysis tools, that can be used to better understand and mitigate the synergistic effects of deforestation and new or planned highways and dams across the Amazon Basin. The paper titled "An explicit GIS-based river basin framework for aquatic ecosystem conservation in the Amazon" appears in the most recent edition of the journal Earth System Science Data. The authors are: Eduardo Venticinque of Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Norte; Bruce Forsberg of the Instituto Nacional de Pesquisas da Amazônia; Ronaldo B. Barthem of the Museu Paraense Emilio Goeldi; Paulo Petry of The Nature Conservancy; Laura Hess of the Earth Research Institute; Armando Mercado, Carlos Cañas, Mariana Montoya, Carlos Durigan, and Michael Goulding of WCS. See the spatial framework database here, the paper here, and a one-pager on the tool here. "The new spatial framework provides a dynamic way to map natural resources and possible infrastructure impacts on them at various scalable levels in the Amazon, one prime example being fisheries and fish migrations and the far-flung wetlands that support them," said Eduardo Venticinque of Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Norte, the lead author of the study. "This new tool will enable scientists and governments to monitor development initiatives across the Amazon basin and help guide policy to minimize the environmental impact of these activities," said WCS scientist Michael Goulding. The Amazon is home to the most biodiverse rainforest on Earth, as well as the greatest freshwater system in the world. The region also supports what is likely the largest assemblage of wetlands in the world, a mosaic that ranges from seasonally flooded forests that cover most of the floodplains to immense savannas inundated for many months each year. The region is also considering a number of infrastructure development projects that could significantly impact the hydrology of the Amazon Basin and its fauna and flora. Conservation efforts typically focus on creating and strengthening protected areas and indigenous territories in the Amazon, with little focus on the aquatic systems. The new framework will help focus conservation and management efforts on waters and wetlands and the important resources they contain, including more than 2,400 species of fish, to promote a more integrated and large-scale approach to protecting the Amazon Basin. In order to create a river basin classification system--one that could be used to serve the needs of conservation and monitoring--the scientists divided the river basin into a number of sub-basins defined by 11 different stream orders ranging from tiny streams to the Amazon River itself. Seven distinct levels of basins were defined, with the main Amazon Basin as Level 1, and larger tributary sub-basins such as the Ucayali and the Madeira as Level 2, and so on. This research was conducted by the Amazon Waters Initiative expert working group supported by Science for Nature and People Partnership (SNAPP), a partnership of The Nature Conservancy, the Wildlife Conservation Society, and the National Center for Ecological Analysis and Synthesis (NCEAS) at the University of California, Santa Barbara. The Amazon Waters Initiative is generously supported by the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation, Mitsubishi Corporation Foundation for the Americas, USAID, and the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. MISSION: WCS saves wildlife and wild places worldwide through science, conservation action, education, and inspiring people to value nature. To achieve our mission, WCS, based at the Bronx Zoo, harnesses the power of its Global Conservation Program in nearly 60 nations and in all the world's oceans and its five wildlife parks in New York City, visited by 4 million people annually. WCS combines its expertise in the field, zoos, and aquarium to achieve its conservation mission. Visit: newsroom.wcs.org Follow: @WCSNewsroom. For more information: 347-840-1242. The Science for Nature and People Partnership Founded in 2013, the Science for Nature and People Partnership (SNAPP) is the world's premier innovation engine of conservation science and sustainable development policy, partnering with public, non-profit and private sector organizations around the world to transform the relationship between people and nature. Backed by The Nature Conservancy (TNC), the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) and the National Center for Ecological Analysis and Synthesis (NCEAS) at the University of California, Santa Barbara, SNAPP funds, convenes and supports Expert Working Groups addressing challenges in four focus areas: Food Security and Nature, Water Security and Nature, Community Resilience and Climate Change, and Ecosystem Services and Biodiversity Benefits. SNAPP has been generously supported by Angela Nomellini and Ken Olivier, Shirley and Harry Hagey, Steve and Roberta Denning, Seth Neiman, the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation, Ward W. and Priscilla B. Woods, and the David and Lucile Packard Foundation. For more information, visit http://snappartnership. The Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation fosters path-breaking scientific discovery, environmental conservation, patient care improvements and preservation of the special character of the Bay Area. Visit http://www. or follow @MooreFound. The U.S. Agency for International Development administers the U.S. foreign assistance program providing economic and humanitarian assistance in more than 80 countries worldwide. The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation supports creative people, effective institutions, and influential networks building a more just, verdant, and peaceful world. MacArthur is placing a few big bets that truly significant progress is possible on some of the world's most pressing social challenges, including over-incarceration, global climate change, nuclear risk, and significantly increasing capital for the social sector. In addition to the MacArthur Fellows Program, the Foundation continues its historic commitments to the role of journalism in a responsible and responsive democracy; the strength and vitality of our headquarters city, Chicago; and generating new knowledge about critical issues.


Shepard Jr. G.H.,Museu Paraense Emilio Goeldi | Ramirez H.,Federal University of Rondônia
Economic Botany | Year: 2011

"Made in Brazil": Human Dispersal of the Brazil Nut (Bertholletia excelsa, Lecythidaceae) in Ancient Amazonia. The Brazil nut, Bertholletia excelsa, is a colossal tree of terra firme forest whose seeds represent the most important non-timber forest product in Amazonia. Its peculiarly inefficient dispersal strategy and discontinuous distribution have led some to hypothesize anthropogenic origins, but evidence to date has been inconclusive. Here we present results of a multidisciplinary study addressing this question. A review of the geographic distribution of B. excelsa and comparison with that of similar Lecythis species suggest a number of anomalies that are consistent with a recent and wide colonization of Bertholletia. Published studies and field observations indicate that anthropogenic disturbance facilitates Brazil nut regeneration. Recent genetic studies showing no sequence diversity and no geographical structuring of within-population variability support a rapid and recent irradiation from an ancestral population. Historical linguistic analysis of indigenous terms for Brazil nut suggests a northern/eastern Amazonian origin for Bertholletia, with a concomitant spread of Brazil nut distribution or cultivation to the south and west. Such an expansion would have been particularly facilitated by the emergence of intensive bitter manioc cultivation and networks of interethnic trade beginning in the first millennium C. E. Together, ecological, phytogeographic, genetic, linguistic, and archeological data reinforce the hypothesis that ancient Amazonian peoples played a role in establishing this emblematic and economically important rainforest landscape. © 2011 The New York Botanical Garden.


Lees A.C.,Museu Paraense Emilio Goeldi | Pimm S.L.,Duke University
Current Biology | Year: 2015

Species are going extinct rapidly, while taxonomic catalogues are still incomplete for even the best-known taxa. Intensive fieldwork is finding species so rare and threatened that some become extinct within years of discovery. Recent bird extinctions in Brazil's coastal forests suggest that some species may have gone extinct before we knew of their existence. © 2015 Elsevier Ltd All rights reserved.


Fernandes A.M.,University of Heidelberg | Gonzalez J.,University of Heidelberg | Wink M.,University of Heidelberg | Aleixo A.,Museu Paraense Emilio Goeldi
Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution | Year: 2013

Amazonian rivers function as important barriers to dispersal of Amazonian birds. Studying population genetics of lineages separated by rivers may help us to uncover the dynamics of biological diversification in the Amazon. We reconstructed the phylogeography of the Wedge-billed Woodcreeper, Glyphorynchus spirurus (Furnariidae) in the Amazon basin. Sampling included 134 individuals from 63 sites distributed in eight Amazonian areas of endemism separated by major Amazonian rivers. Nucleotide sequences were generated for five genes: two mtDNA genes (1047. bp for cyt b and 1002. bp for ND2) and three nuclear genes (647. bp from the sex-linked gene ACO, 319. bp from the intron of G3PDH, and 619. bp from intron 2 of MYO). In addition, 37 individuals were randomly selected from the Rondônia and Inambari areas of endemism for genomic fingerprinting, using five ISSR primers. Our results reveal allopatric and well-supported lineages within G. spirurus with high levels of genetic differentiation (p-distances 0.9-6.3%) across opposite banks of major Amazonian rivers. The multilocus phylogenetic reconstructions obtained reveal several incongruences with current subspecies taxonomy. Within currently recognized subspecies, we found high levels of both paraphyly and genetic differentiation, indicating deep divergences and strong isolation consistent with species-level differences. ISSR fingerprinting supports the existence of genetically differentiated populations on opposite sides of the Madeira River. Molecular dating suggests an initial vicariation event isolating populations from the Guiana center of endemism during the Late Miocene/Early Pliocene, while more recent events subdivided Brazilian Shield populations during the Lower Pleistocene. © 2012 Elsevier Inc.


Fernandes A.M.,University of Heidelberg | Wink M.,University of Heidelberg | Aleixo A.,Museu Paraense Emilio Goeldi
Journal of Biogeography | Year: 2012

Aim We examined patterns of spatial and temporal diversification of the Amazonian endemic chestnut-tailed antbird, Mymeciza hemimelaena (Thamnophilidae), to evaluate the diversification of a widespread avian taxon across rivers that potentially represent major natural barriers. Location Lowland Amazonia. Methods Sequences of the mitochondrial ND2 and cytochrome b genes were investigated from 65 individuals distributed throughout the entire range of M. hemimelaena, and including the two currently valid subspecies M. h. hemimelaena and M. h. pallens. Based on a combination of phylogeographic tools, molecular dating, and population genetic methods, we reconstructed a spatio-temporal scenario of diversification of M. hemimelaena in the Amazon. Results The data revealed three genetically divergent and monophyletic groups in M. hemimelaena, which can also be distinguished by a combination of morphological and vocal characters. Two of these clades correspond to the previously described taxa M. h. hemimelaena and M. h. pallens, which are separated by the upper Madeira River, a main Amazonian tributary. The third clade is distributed between the middle reaches of the Madeira River and the much smaller tributaries Jiparaná and Aripuanã, and, although currently treated as M. h. pallens, clearly constitutes an independent evolutionary lineage probably deserving separate species status. Molecular clock and population genetic analyses indicate that diversification in this group occurred throughout the Pleistocene, with demographic fluctuations assumed for M. h. hemimelaena and M. h. pallens. Mainconclusions The findings implicate rivers as barriers driving diversification in the M. hemimelaena complex. Levels of mitochondrial DNA divergence and associated morphological and vocal traits support its division into at least three separate species with comparatively small ranges. The existence of a previously unrecognized lineage in the M. hemimelaena complex, and the high degree of population structuring found in M. h. hemimelaena underscore the pervasiveness of cryptic endemism throughout Amazonia and the importance of DNA-based taxonomic and phylogeographic studies in providing the accurate estimates of diversity that are essential for conservation planning. © 2012 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.


MacIel A.O.,Museu Paraense Emilio Goeldi | Hoogmoed M.S.,Museu Paraense Emilio Goeldi
Zootaxa | Year: 2011

Based on examination of 622 specimens of Gymnophiona, 15 species are recognized for Brazilian Amazonia. Geographical variation in characters is low and is mainly restricted to the number of annuli. One new species is described, Microcaecilia rochai sp. nov. New distribution data and maps for most species are provided. A key to the identification of caecilians of Brazilian Amazonia is presented. Copyright © 2011 • Magnolia Press.


Alfaro J.W.L.,University of California at Los Angeles | Silva Jr. J.S.E.,Museu Paraense Emilio Goeldi | Rylands A.B.,Wildlife Conservation Society
American Journal of Primatology | Year: 2012

Capuchin monkey behavior has been the focus of increasing numbers of captive and field studies in recent years, clarifying behavioral and ecological differences between the two morphological types: the gracile and the robust capuchins (also referred to as untufted and tufted). Studies have tended to focus on the gracile species Cebus capucinus (fewer data are available for C. albifrons, C. olivaceus, and C. kaapori) and on Cebus apella, a name that has encompassed all of the robust capuchins since the 1960s. As a result, it is difficult to ascertain the variation within either gracile or robust types. The phylogenetic relationships between gracile and robust capuchins have also, until now, remained obscure. Recent studies have suggested two independent Pliocene radiations of capuchins stemming from a common ancestor in the Late Miocene, about 6.2 millions of years ago (Ma). The present-day gracile capuchins most likely originated in the Amazon, and the robust capuchins in the Atlantic Forest to the southeast. Sympatry between the two types is explained by a recent expansion of robust capuchins into the Amazon (ca. 400,000 years ago). Morphological data also support a division of capuchins into the same two distinct groups, and we propose the division of capuchin monkeys into two genera, Sapajus Kerr, 1792, for robust capuchins and Cebus Erxleben, 1777, for gracile capuchins, based on a review of extensive morphological, genetic, behavioral, ecological, and biogeographic evidence. © 2012 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.


Borges S.H.,Museu Paraense Emilio Goeldi
Studies on Neotropical Fauna and Environment | Year: 2013

The purpose of this study is to analyze the avifauna of a complex Amazonian landscape to understand the contribution of habitat heterogeneity to the regional bird diversity. Birds were sampled with mist nets and point counts in six vegetation types in the Jaú National Park, Brazilian Amazon. White sand campinas and white sand forests were less diverse than other vegetation types. Despite their lower diversity, the bird faunas of white sand campinas and open canopy flooded forests were very distinct at the landscape scale. Dominance of individuals in white sand campinas, open canopy flooded forests and a white sand forest was higher than in other vegetation types. Number of species was correlated with area and structural complexity of the vegetation. Species composition was distinct between vegetation types and ordinations of sites revealed ecological gradients related to the soil variability and flooding regimes. Habitat heterogeneity provided by the river's seasonal flooding and the distribution of soil types is important for structuring bird communities in the study region. Additionally, allopatric speciation and dispersal events play important roles in the diversification of bird communities in the Jaú National Park.A proposta deste estudo é analisar a avifauna de uma complexa paisagem amazônica para entender a contribuição da heterogeneidade de hábitat para a diversidade de aves. As aves foram amostradas com redes de captura e contagens por pontos em seis tipos de vegetação no Parque Nacional do Jaú, Amazônia brasileira. Campinas e campinaranas apresentaram menor diversidade de aves. Apesar da baixa diversidade, as avifaunas das campinas e matas alagáveis de copa aberta foram muito distintas na escala da paisagem. A dominância de indivíduos nas campinas, matas alagáveis de copa aberta e campinaranas foi superior comparada aos outros tipos de vegetação. Número de espécies de aves foi correlacionado com área e complexidade estrutural da vegetação. A composição de espécies foi distinta entre os tipos de vegetação e ordenações dos sítios revelaram gradientes ecológicos relacionados à variabilidade de solos e regime de alagamento dos rios. Heterogeneidade de hábitats providenciada pelo alagamento sazonal dos rios e variabilidade de solos é importante na estruturação das comunidades de aves na região de estudo. Especiação alopátrica e eventos de dispersão também desempenham importante papel na diversificação da avifauna do Parque Nacional do Jaú. © 2013 Taylor & Francis.


Patent
Federal University of Pará, Federal University of Minas Gerais, Museu Paraense Emilio Goeldi, Instituto Evandro Chagas and Secretaria Executiva De Saude Publica Do Estado Do Para | Date: 2013-05-13

The present invention describes the obtaining process of the dichloromethane fraction and subfractions from Eleutherine plicata, popularly known as marupazinho, marupari, palmeirinha, coquinho, marupa, marupa, marup-piranga, and lirio-folha-de-palmeira. This invention comprises the obtaining process of pharmaceutical compositions that contain the dichloromethane fraction and/or naphthoquinone, as well as its use for malaria treatment. Extract and fractions were assayed and presented antiplasmodial activity, particularly against chloroquine-resistant Plasmodium falciparum (clone W2).


Silva R.R.,Museu Paraense Emilio Goeldi | Brandao C.R.F.,University of Sao Paulo
PLoS ONE | Year: 2014

General principles that shape community structure can be described based on a functional trait approach grounded on predictive models; increased attention has been paid to factors accounting for the functional diversity of species assemblages and its association with species richness along environmental gradients. We analyze here the interaction between leaf-litter ant species richness, the local communities' morphological structure and fundamental niche within the context of a northeast-southeast latitudinal gradient in one of the world's most species-rich ecosystems, the Atlantic Forest, representing 2,700 km of tropical rainforest along almost 20° of latitude in eastern Brazil. Our results are consistent with an ecosystem-wide pattern in communities' structure, with relatively high species turnover but functionally analogous leaf-litter ant communities' organization. Our results suggest directional shifts in the morphological space along the environmental gradient from overdispersed to aggregated (from North to South), suggesting that primary productivity and environmental heterogeneity (altitude, temperature and precipitation in the case) determine the distribution of traits and regulate the assembly rules, shaping local leaf-litter ant communities. Contrary to the expected and most common pattern along latitudinal gradients, the Atlantic Forest leaf litter ant communities show an inverse pattern in richness, that is, richer communities in higher than in lower latitudes. The morphological specialization of communities showed more morphologically distinct communities at low latitudes and species redundancy at high latitudes. We claim that an inverse latitudinal gradient in primary productivity and environmental heterogeneity across the Atlantic forest may affect morphological diversity and species richness, enhancing species coexistence mechanisms, and producing thus the observed patterns. We suggest that a functional framework based on flexible enough traits should be pursued to allow comparisons at local, regional and global levels. © 2014 Silva, Brandão.

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