Yanachaga Chimillén National Park (01.01.2013 to 03.31.2013)
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January - March
During February, site manager Rodolfo Vásquez attended two meetings on "Implementation of the Plan of Scientific Research in Yanachaga-Chemillén National Park” that were convened by the Peruvian NGO DRIS / Desarrollo Rural Sustentable. Professionals from the Universidad Nacional Daniel Alcides Carrion, the Museo de Historia Natural (Lima), the Frankfurt Zoological Society-Peru, Instituto Bien Común (IBC), and Peru’s Ministry of Environment also attended the meetings. The participants presented research projects that their institutions had developed or were currently developing in the National Park or its buffer zones—the first time that these institutions had shared information about their work with one another. Rodolfo Vásquez, representing MBG, discussed the activities that MBG has been conducting since 2002 in the region, including basic research, such as botanical explorations; low-impact productive activities aimed sustainable development, such as school gardens and reforestation; and monitoring activities, such as implementation of the TEAM site.
Unusual Events at the TEAM Site:
No unusual events during this period
When we collected specimens in plot YAN-VG-05, we observed half a dozen large and very distinctive palm trees and made collections from them. At the herbarium (HOXA), we reviewed the specimens in consultation with specialist A. Henderson, who confirmed that the palm was a new species that he was describing with material from el Sira, a range near Yanachaga-Chemillén National Park. However, while A. Henderson had only female flowers, our collections included male flowers that completed the description. The species will soon be published with the name Welfia alfredii sp. nov. A. Henderson is preparing the publication in collaboration with Isabel Villalba, a biologist for MBG’s Peru program.
During this period we continued to work on the identifications of the samples from the three plots collected in 2011 and 2012 in plots YAN-VG-03, YAN-VG-05, and YAN VG-06. A rapid count of the number of individuals inventoried in each of these years shows that the number of individuals in the plots varies. Only plot YAN-VG-01, where there were 13 new recruits in total, shows a considerable increase. In the other plots, the increase in the number of trees is quite low, and in some years there were fewer individuals than in the previous year, as in the case of plot YAN-VG-02. By 2012, there were 65 fewer individuals in YAN-VG-02 than in 2011 owing mainly to the very strong winds in the area at the end of September 2011.
Table 1. Number of individuals per plot in each year of re-measurement
After identifying the specimens from the plots, we can report that the composition of the trees is as follows: plot YAN-VG-03, which to date is the most diverse plot for the Selva Central, has 240 species distributed in 48 families; plot YAN-VG-05 has 190 species distributed in 44 families; and plot YAN-VG-06, the plot with the largest number of trees in the Selva Central (1013 individuals) has 217 species distributed in 41 families.
The identifications of specimens from plot YAN-VG-01 were made in 2008 by staff of RAINFOR. Although we have these data, we did not include them in this brief analysis because we would first need to review the material in order to confirm the identifications. Below is a series of tables with information on the diversity and composition of the plots. Tables 2, 4, and 6 show the 10 most important families by the number of species in plots YAN-VG-05, YAN-VG-06, and YAN-VG-03, respectively; while Tables 3, 5, and 7 show the 10 most important species by number of individuals in each of these plots. As the tables illustrate, there is no uniformity in the composition of families in the three plots. For example, in plots YAN-VG-05 (Table 2) and YAN-VG-06 (Table 4.), the Lauraceae family has the largest number of species, while in plot YAN-VG -03 (Table 6.) Fabaceae has the largest number of species and Lauraceae ranks only eighth in number of species. Similarly, the abundance of individuals per species varies among the three plots. Most remarkable is the high number of Iriartea deltoidea (104 individuals) in plot YAN-VG-03 (Table 7.): this species comprises 14.5% of the trees in this plot.
Table 2. The 10 most important families by number of species in plot YAN-VG-05
Table 3. The 10 most important species by abundance of individuals in plot YAN-VG-05
Table 4: The 10 most important families by number of species in plot YAN-VG-06
Table 5. The 10 most important species by abundance of individuals in plot YAN-VG-06
Table 6. The 10 most important families by number of species in plot YAN-VG-03
Table 7. The 10 most important species by number of individuals in plot YAN-VG-03
Terrestrial Vertebrate Protocol:
We inspected the camera traps and changed the silica gel in the containers holding each of the cameras. There were no other activities in this protocol. An important concern is that we do not have extra cameras to replace any that might break or malfunction. To efficiently implement the sampling points in July 2013, we will need at least two back-up cameras.
We visit the meteorological station between 14th and the 20th of each month, but it is not always possible to get to the station on schedule when river conditions prevent us from navigating the Río Isozacín. Each time we visit the station, we clear the weeds growing inside and outside the station, remove the debris of dead vegetation, remove any wasp and termite nests, and check the connections, the condition of the cables, the charge of the battery, and the operation of the solar panel. During this period we downloaded the data without major problems and uploaded them to the portal as soon as we could. In January and February, we had some difficulties in downloading the data that we will explain later.
None in this period
Terrestrial Vertebrate Protocol:
None in this period
In January, we had some difficulties in buying a new battery, but we finally obtained the battery and on January 5 we installed it. When we returned to the meteorological station in February, we had difficulty downloading the data. For unknown reasons, the connection from the computer to the datalogger was cut every five minutes, and when we finally succeeded in downloading the data and then reviewed the information, we noted that the regular table where data reside had been changed. However, this was not the problem. Rather, we found that the datalogger had stopped collecting data at 16:25:00 on 2/12/2013, and thus there are no data from then until 14:10:00 on 2/18/2013, the time when we collected the data.
In March, we had no difficulty in collecting the data.
No problems except that the weather sometimes prevents us from arriving on schedule
Obtain two camera traps for the 2013 season