User Manual Privacy Policy Disclaimer Contact us
  Advanced SearchBrowse




Conference Paper

Diversität von Bäumen in amazonischen Wäldern


Parolin,  Pia
Working Group Tropical Ecology, Max Planck Institute for Limnology, Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Biology, Max Planck Society;

External Ressource
No external resources are shared
Fulltext (public)
There are no public fulltexts stored in PuRe
Supplementary Material (public)
There is no public supplementary material available

Parolin, P. (2002). Diversität von Bäumen in amazonischen Wäldern. Phyllodrom Journal, Tagungsband 2002, 25-33.

Cite as: http://hdl.handle.net/11858/00-001M-0000-000F-DE0B-3
The Amazonian flora has the highest tree diversity on earth: in 1000 km2 of Terra Firme-forest near Manaus (Brazil) 1300 tree species were identified. The world record was found in the Peruvian lowland forest near Iquitos with 300 tree species on one hectare. The search for explanations of this high Amazonian diversity has been a focus of discussions for several decades already. The refuge theory says that dry periods in the pleistocene caused the formation of forest refugia within drier savannahs. The high local endemism and radiation resulting from this led to a high speciation. On the other hand, the theory of recent speciation says that in situ speciation is responsible for the evolution of species basing on environmental gradients and habitat differentiation. The current patterns thus have evolved since - and not during the pleistocene. The forests often are not uniform, but build mosaics and clines which allow speciation. Additionally, there is a divergence of the peripheric, partially isolated forests due to the large distances in Amazonia. The postulation of an equatorial climate which has been stable for a long period and led to the gradual accumulation of species points in the same direction. Today this diversity is endangered by logging in many regions. In Brazil, which has the largest area of total Amazonia, only180 Mio. ha of the original 286 Mio. ha remain to date. Intensive research is being performed to analyse the effects of forest fragmentation. In long-term studies it became apparent that fragmentation leads to a high decrease of forest biomass by an increased tree mortality. The regrowing vines and small trees or shrubs cannot compensate this loss. The whole species composition changes, and diversity decreases rapidly.