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SP4-RM2 Linking amphibian diverstiy and arthropod-pest species abundance in agroecosystems under land-use and climate change


Main Results 

  • The diversity herpetofauna in dry forest systems in the region has so far been greatly underestimated. The species lists for the area has been significantly expanded including also some first records of species for the region
  • Key habitats like bromeliad groups play an important role for the dynamics of focal species’ occurrence and are in addition also a preferred habitat of many other reptile and amphibian species. Extreme climatic events and a high land-use intensity along with frequent cutting of bromeliad for livestock fodder are expected to cause a decreasing species richness of dry forest ecosystems in terms of the reptile fauna.
  • Artificial aquatic habitats serve actually as important compensatory habitats for the reproduction of some species of amphibians. Under the particularly dry conditions, the anthropogenic habitats may have positive effects on the preservation of local amphibian diversity, although it remains unclear whether such waters can be considered as full habitat equivalent in the long term.

Zé da Jia: Biological pest control

A leaflet directed to children and fans of “cordel literature” and comic strips has been prepared: Zé da Jia explores the benefits of amphibians in combating crop pests. He explains the advantages of amphibians over the use of pesticides in cultivation which not only disturb insects but also other animals as well as the human health. Amphibians do have an important role in maintaining the equilibrium between predator and prey. This means that farmers can take advantage of biodiversity in their cropping areas by maintaining habitats of amphibians instead of applying pesticides (or at least reducing their application) and that way contribute to biodiversity conservation as well as environmental and human health. The leaflet—find it here—seeks to mediate an understanding of biodiversity-friendly agricultural practices leading to the depicted win-win situation, benefitting both farmers and the environment.

You can download a leaflet describing biological pest control in WOCAT style (World Overview of Conservation Approaches and Technologies - https://www.wocat.net/) here.



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