Brazil: Planned Sites

Planned Sites in Brazil

Atlantic Forest

Cited as one of the top five “hottest hotspots” for conservation, the Atlantic Forest is older than forests of the Amazon basin. The isolation of this ancient forest has contributed to the evolution of species found nowhere else. About half of the roughly 2,000 Atlantic Forest plant species are endemic. Roughly 90% of the Atlantic Forest amphibians are endemic.

The Atlantic Forest has suffered greatly since Europeans arrived, mainly due to (in rough and overlapping historical order) sugarcane, coffee, cattle ranching, cocoa, Eucalyptus forest, and urbanization. Two of the three largest cities in South America were built on and are growing at the expense of the Atlantic Forest. Only about 12.5% of the Atlantic Forest remains, and only about half of that occurs in protected areas. There is an urgent need to build on the success of the golden lion tamarin and other conservation initiatives in this region to reverse the decline. We will study at Poço das Antas and União, two federal biological reserves in golden lion tamarin territory and critical to their conservation, as well as in private lands that have been voluntarily contributed to conservation.

Rio de Janeiro

The course will depart from and end in Rio de Janeiro, known as the “Cidade Maravilhosa” and home of the 2016 Olympics. Students wishing to visit this world-class city should plan to arrive before the course start date or plan to stay after.