Tropical Forest Reserves Vulnerable to Declines
Posted 29 July 2012 - 11:45 AM
Biodiversity in tropical forest reserves is declining despite protection efforts. A new study by scientists at the Smitsonian Tropical Research Institute and other conservation organizations has revealed that nearly half of all protected areas in tropical forests are experiencing loss of biodiversity and an increase in invasive species despite their protected status.
The study involved over 200 scientists who examined the ecological health of nature reserves in the Americas, Asia, the Pacific Islands, and Africa. They focused on determining changes in the abundance of animal and plant species composition within protected areas. They found that a few reserves were holding up well, such as Bwindi Impenetrable N.P. in Uganda, Santa Rosa in Costa Rica, and Los Amigos in Peru. Those that were not holding up well included Kahuzi Biega in the Democratic Republic of Congo, Xishuangbanna in southern China, and Northern Sierra Madre in the Philippines.
Those nature reserves faring the least well included locations where illegal settlment, hunting and logging were encroaching on nearby lands. In light of the study results, conservationists called for better protection of protected areas.
Photo © Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute.Tropical Forest Reserves Vulnerable to Declines originally appeared on About.com Animals / Wildlife on Sunday, July 29th, 2012 at 11:45:34.
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