Biodiversity of key-taxa in the Pantanal: Database and Optimization of methods

pictureThe project aims to establish a feasible database for main taxa of the Pantanal area (western Central-Brazil).

The loss of biodiversity is actually a global problem. On the local scale an urgent need exists to establish, to optimise, and to standardise methods for the determination of biodiversity. The failing of such data impede projects for sustainable land-use and nature conservation.

The Pantanal region is one of the largest wetlands in the world. It is located in the upper zone of the Rio Paraguay at the border between Brazil, Bolivia, and Paraguay. The 139,111 km² large area is in semi-natural conditions in its largest extend and, thus, takes an outstanding level for the biodiversity of Neotropical wetlands. For a sustainable management in the Pantanal a habitat typology is needed based on physical and biological data.

Earlier cooperation projects between Germany and Brazil have produced an extensive amount of data from the Pantanal region that is still unidentified, yet, but shall be studied by the present project. Furthermore, a long-term study exists in the region. However, a database is wanted to compile this information and to connect it with other ecological information.

The project will compile all data to species and habitat diversity in a database that will serve amongst others to gain a typology of habitats for sustainable land-use and nature conservation purposes. The structure of the database shall be compatible with other international biodiversity projects (e.g. GBIF).

The identification and inventory of rove beetles (Staphylinidae) is the challenge of the subproject at the department “Applied Ecology”. Additional data will be provided that already exist in an own database of South-American Staphylinidae including material of different museums in the world. A training and education of Brazilian scientists in preparations and identification of South-American rove beetles is planned during a cooperation with the University of Mato Grosso (UFMT). The project starts at 9 Sept. 2011.

(DFG-Projekt, 444BRA113/60/0-1, Pantanal)