July – August 2015. PPBIO/RAINFOR. Brazil
The joint PPBio/RAINFOR Amazon monitoring campaign started in July 2015, funded by a Newton grant from NERC to Oliver Phillips and Flavia Costa. For 4 weeks a team formed by Fernanda Coelho, Adriane Esquivel and Thaiane Sousa led a research expedition joined by 9 local assistants to re-measure 8 permanent plots of 1-ha each along the BR 319 road. These plots were installed in 2010 and 2011 between the Purus and Madeira Rivers along an 850-km federal road that connects Manaus-AM to Porto Velho-RO, in the heart of the Amazon and addressing one of the biggest un-sampled gaps in the world. During the field campaign the team recorded diameter measurements, heights, additional informations in relation to liana infestation and tree mode of death, and collected hundreds of recruits and other individuals to improve species identifications for the plots.
All recensused plots are well distributed along BR 319 transect: Manaquiri Km 100 (3 plots), Igapo-Acu km 260 (2 plots) and Orquestra km 300 (3 plots). In August the team is continuing on to re-measure 5 more plots closer to Porto Velho: Capana km 400 (3 plots) and Puruzinho km 620 (2 plots). The re-measurement of these plots provides the first ever ground data to help address fundamental questions concerning forest dynamics and carbon fluxes from this part of the Brazilian Amazon.
BR-319, Brasil (photo: Fernanda Coelho de Sauza 2015)