White-sand savannas are expanding in the heart of the Amazon as a result of recurring forest fires, according to a study published in the journal Ecosystems.
The study was supported by FAPESP, and conducted by Bernardo Monteiro Flores, currently a postdoctoral fellow in ecology at the Federal University of Santa Catarina (UFSC) in Brazil, and Milena Holmgren, a professor in the Department of Environmental Sciences at Wageningen University in the Netherlands.
“The edges of the Amazon Rainforest have long been considered the most vulnerable parts owing to expansion of the agricultural frontier. This degradation of the forest along the so-called ‘deforestation arc’ [a curve that hugs the southeastern edge of the forest] continues to occur and is extremely troubling. However, our study detected the appearance of savannas in the heart of the Amazon a long way away from the agricultural frontier,” Flores told Agência FAPESP.
Read more at: Fundacao de Amparo a Pesquisa do Estado de Sao Paulo