Neotropical Savannas and Seasonally Dry Forests: Plant Diversity, Biogeography, and Conservation

R. Toby Pennington, James A. Ratter
CRC Press, 25 mai 2006 - 504 pages
More often than not, when people think of a neotropical forest, what comes to mind is a rain forest, rather than a dry forest. Just as typically, when they imagine a savanna, they visualize the African plains, rather than those dry woodlands and grasslands found in the Neotropics. These same preconceptions can be found among scientists, as these neotropical biomes receive nowhere near the attention they should - in terms of both research and conservation -considering the amount of land they encompass and the diversity of vegetation they contain.

Neotropical Savannas and Dry Forests: Plant Diversity, Biogeography, and Conservation provides an engaging synthesis of information on the plant diversity and geography, as well as the conservation status, of these species-rich areas. This impressive compilation is the result of a plant diversity symposium that took place during an international conference on tropical savannas and seasonally dry forests held in 2003. Fifty leading scientists, representing a variety of disciplines have contributed to the chapters of this book in an effort to address three questions:
  • What are the patterns of diversity, species-richness and endemism of the floras of neotropical seasonally dry forest and savannas?
  • How and why did this endemism and diversity arise?
  • Are these ecosystems adequately protected and, if not, which areas should be elevated into priorities for conservation, and how can this be best achieved?

    This work is the first extensive compilation of the patterns of plant biodiversity in these neotropical ecosystems. The overview also provides a summary of what is known of their evolutionary history, including an examination of the links to the development of analogous vegetation in Africa. In contrast to previously published titles that emphasize ecology and physiology, this work focuses on plant biodiversity and reviews molecular phylogenetic and molecular population genetic approaches to discovering biogeographic history.

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    Table des matières

    1 An Overview of the Plant Diversity Biogeography and Conservation of Neotropical Savannas and Seasonally Dry Forests
    2 Biodiversity Patterns of the Woody Vegetation of the Brazilian Cerrado
    3 Observations on the Southern Cerrados and their Relationship with the Core Area
    4 Phytogeography of Cerrado Sensu Stricto and Land System Zoning in Central Brazil
    A Review
    Phytogeographical Patterns Inferred from Distribution Data of the Leguminosae
    7 Floristic Relationships of Seasonally Dry Forests of Eastern South America Based on Tree Species Distribution Patterns
    8 Biogeography of the Forests of the ParaguayParaná Basin
    Insights from Legumes
    ChamelaCuixmala Jalisco as a Focal Point for Comparison
    14 What Determines Dry Forest Conservation in Mesoamerica? Opportunism and Pragmatism in Mexican and Nicaraguan Protected Areas
    15 Botanical and Ecological Basis for the Resilience of Antillean Dry Forests
    16 Diversity Biogeography and Conservation of Woody Plants in Tropical Dry Forest of South Florida
    Insights from PalaeoEcological Data
    An Example Using Two Neotropical Seasonally Dry Forest Species
    19 Floristic and Geographical Stability of Discontinuous Seasonally Dry Tropical Forests Explains Patterns of Plant Phylogeny and Endemism

    9 The Chiquitano Dry Forest the Transition between Humid and Dry Forest in Eastern Lowland Bolivia
    Insights from Acanthaceae Asclepiadaceae and Labiatae
    11 Phytogeography and Floristics of Seasonally Dry Tropical Forests in Peru
    Parallels and Comparisons with the Neotropics
    Droits d'auteur

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