Amazon Forest Inventory Network

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Peru

  • August 2008
Peru

In August 2008 a major new phase in the RAINFOR project got underway in Amazonia. Funding from the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation is allowing us to significantly expand our effort, measuring more plots in more places and bringing in important new collaborators to the network. We started with our first visit to Los Amigos Biological Station, where we conducted a training course in methods for measuring carbon dynamics. Permanent plots were recensused at Los Amigos, Tambopata, Reserva Amazonica, and in Manu National Park, led by four new postdocs working with RAINFOR (Abel Monteagudo from Peru, Roel Brienen from The Netherlands, Beto Quesada from Brasil and Ted Feldpausch from the USA) and by caipirinha-master Luiz Aragao (Brasil). Invaluable help in organising this ambitious and complex work was provided by Montserrat Garcia-Hernandez, Javier Silva (Peru), and Nigel Pitman (USA and Los Amigos). This region of Peru - Madre de Dios - now includes some of the longest-running permanent plots in the neotropics (up to 29 years of monitoring at Tambopata, and 32 years at Cocha Cashu), giving unique insights into the dynamism and long-term changes of forests in this south-western extent of the vast Amazon. The Moore project will also allow us to expand our inventory and monitoring of soil carbon stocks, and to monitor the carbon dynamics of forests at some key sites at much higher temporal resolution than previously possible. Scientists will gain better understanding of the ultimate controls of forest dynamics and will allow us to better assess the impact of future climate events (such as droughts) and change on the whole system.