Navigation Links
New biodiversity map of the Andes shows species in dire need of protection
Date:1/26/2012

This release is available in Spanish.

The Andes-Amazon basin of Peru and Bolivia is one of the most biologically rich and rapidly changing areas of the world. A new study published in BioMed Central's open access journal BMC Ecology has used information collected over the last 100 years by explorers and from satellite images which reveals detailed patterns of species and ecosystems that occur only in this region. Worryingly, the study also finds that many of these unique species and ecosystems are lacking vital national level protection.

Endemic species are restricted to a specific area and occur nowhere else. These species are especially vulnerable to climate and environmental changes because they require unique climates and soil conditions. This makes them an ideal indicator for measuring biodiversity.

A multinational team from the United States, Bolivia, Peru, and other countries mapped a wide range of ecosystems in Bolivia and Peru, from the wetlands of Beni savanna and the Iquitos vrzea, to the bone dry xeric habitats of inter-Andean valleys, and the cool and humid montane forests along much of the eastern Andean slope. Over 7000 individual records of endemic species locations for 115 birds, 55 mammals, 177 amphibians and 435 plants were combined with climate data (WorldClim), topography (NASA's SRTM), and vegetation (NASA's MODIS satellite sensor), resulting in species distribution maps, accurate to 1km.

Analysis of the maps showed that the highest concentration of endemic birds and mammals was along a narrow band of the Andes mountains, between 2500 and 3000m above sea level. Endemic amphibian species peaked at 1000 to 1500m and were especially concentrated in southern Peru and northern Bolivia. One of the areas that had the highest levels of 'irreplaceability' and highest number of species for birds and mammals, is an unprotected region surrounding the small World Heritage Site of Macchu Pichu (Cordillera de Vilcabamba, Peru).

Disturbingly, the authors found that a total of 226 endemic species have no national protection and about half of the ecological systems have 10% or less of their range protected. Additionally only 20% of the areas with high numbers of endemic species and 20% of the irreplaceable areas are currently protected.

Dr Jennifer Swenson, from Duke University, who led the research said, "Biodiversity in the Andes is under threat from oil and gold mining, infrastructure projects, illegal crops, and many other activities. There is already evidence of species migrating upslope to keep up with climate change in this region. Conservation across the Andes needs urgent revising and we hope that our data will help protect this incredibly unique region."


'/>"/>

Contact: Dr. Hilary Glover
hilary.glover@biomedcentral.com
44-203-192-2370
BioMed Central
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. The biodiversity crisis: Worse than climate change
2. Conserving biodiversity could benefit the worlds poor
3. German research team targets at risk data on biodiversity
4. New biodiversity data publishing framework proposed
5. Creative Commons non-commercial licenses impede the re-use of biodiversity information
6. Electronic infrastructures accelerate biodiversity discoveries
7. Ancient environment led to Earths current marine biodiversity
8. Marine biodiversity loss due to warming and predation: UBC researcher
9. A new model for understanding biodiversity
10. Predicting future threats for global amphibian biodiversity
11. GigaBlitz event seeks citizen scientists to capture images of nearby biodiversity
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:5/3/2016)... , May 3, 2016  Neurotechnology, a provider ... MegaMatcher Automated Biometric Identification System (ABIS) , ... multi-biometric projects. MegaMatcher ABIS can process multiple complex ... any combination of fingerprint, face or iris biometrics. ... SDK and MegaMatcher Accelerator , which ...
(Date:4/19/2016)... April 20, 2016 The new ... a compact web-based "all-in-one" system solution for all door ... reader or the door interface with integration authorization management ... control systems. The minimal dimensions of the access control ... the building installations offer considerable freedom of design with ...
(Date:3/31/2016)... 31, 2016   ... the "Company") LegacyXChange is excited to release ... soon to be launched online site for trading 100% ... ) will also provide potential shareholders a sense of ... to an industry that is notorious for fraud. The ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:6/23/2016)...   Boston Biomedical , an industry leader ... target cancer stemness pathways, announced that its lead ... Designation from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration ... gastroesophageal junction (GEJ) cancer. Napabucasin is an orally ... stemness pathways by targeting STAT3, and is currently ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... ... June 23, 2016 , ... Charm Sciences, Inc. ... test has received AOAC Research Institute approval 061601. , “This is another AOAC-RI ... stated Bob Salter, Vice President of Regulatory and Industrial Affairs. “The Peel Plate ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... , ... June 23, 2016 , ... ... announced the launch of the Supplyframe Design Lab . Located in Pasadena, ... explore the future of how hardware projects are designed, built and brought to ...
(Date:6/23/2016)...  Blueprint Bio, a company dedicated to identifying, protecting ... has closed its Series A funding round, according to ... "We have received a commitment from Forentis Fund that ... meet our current goals," stated Matthew Nunez . ... complete validation on the current projects in our pipeline, ...
Breaking Biology Technology: