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Fragmentation of Araucaria Forests in the Chapecó Ecological Corridor, Santa Catarina

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Author(s): Gisele Garcia Alarcon | Marcos Aurélio Da-Ré | Shigueko T. Ishiy Fukahori | Leonardo Rampinelli Zanella

Journal: Biotemas
ISSN 0103-1643

Volume: 24;
Issue: 3;
Start page: 25;
Date: 2011;
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Keywords: Araucaria Forest | Ecological corridor | Landscape fragmentation

ABSTRACT
In Brazil, only 2% of the Araucaria forest remains, and less than 1% of this forest is protected (as conservation units). In Santa Catarina, the Chapecó River sub-basin was evaluated for the creation of a state ecological corridor. Studies were developed within the Microbacias 2 Project between 2007 and 2009. Landscape metrics provided important data for evaluating the conservation status of the forest remnants for the zoning of the corridor. The Chapecó Ecological Corridor encompasses around 5,000km²; 50.5% of this area comprises remnants of natural ecosystems and 42.7% is used by agricultural activities. Fifteen fragments, which are each larger than 500ha, are Araucaria forests that contain elements of Floresta Estacional Decidual. Of the 83 watersheds studied in permanent preservation areas, 20.5% has more than 60% vegetation cover and 57.5% has between 10% and 30% vegetation cover. It is estimated that the sub-basin has 111,000km2 of forest on private properties, along with remnants in three conservation units and three indigenous areas. The forests of the Chapecó Ecological Corridor represent the last fragments of continuous Araucaria forest in western Santa Catarina.
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