Protecting Biodiversity and Sustainable Livelihoods In The Wetlands of the Peruvian Amazon – Vegetation and Carbon Component

Brief summary of the project:

The female individuals of the aguaje palm (Mauritia flexuosa) are traditionally cut to obtain the aguaje fruits, which are sold at markets in the major ports of the Peruvian Amazon. These harvesting techniques could cause the natural populations of aguaje to decline in the medium and long term, which would negatively impact the local and national market due to the scarcity of the fruit. In addition, the gradual disappearance of the palm swamps, known as aguajales, could have a direct impact on the provision of ecosystem services, such as the storage of carbon. The vegetation component of the project: “PROTECTING BIODIVERSITY AND SUSTAINABLE LIVELIHOODS IN THE WETLANDS OF PERUVIAN AMAZONIA” seeks to monitor the impact of degradation by cutting the female aguaje palms on the diversity, structure and biomass of the aguajales of the Loreto region. Twelve permanent vegetation plots were established along a gradient of degradation (i.e. few to many cut female aguaje palms). In each plot, the number of individuals per species was quantified, the aerial biomass of each aguaje palm calculated and the population structure of the palms evaluated.

Measuring height of trees and palms

Activities:

  • Installation of 12 permanent vegetation plots.
  • Measurement of diameter and height of trees and palms with DBH of >10cm, in every vegetation plot.
  • Identification of botanical samples taken from the plots and uploading of data onto digital platforms (forestplots.net).
  • Preparation of a methodological guide for the evaluation of the effect of cutting aguaje palms on plant diversity.
Measuring stem diameter

Members of the group:

Name Affiliation
Euridice Honorio Coronado Instituto de Investigaciones de la Amazonía Peruana (IIAP)
Nallaret Davila Cardoso IIAP
Jhon del Aguila Pasquel IIAP
Jimmy Cordova Oroche IIAP
Eliseo Ramirez Paredes IIAP
Leticia Gatica Saboya IIAP
Amy Rengifo Burga IIAP
Camille Choquet IIAP

Principle contact: Jhon del Aguila (jhonpasquel@gmail.com)