The Biota of Boa Nova region: a baseline for a conservation plan

Eduardo Mariano

The Boa Nova of Brazil consists of two highly threatened vegetation types—deciduous dry forest and humid patches of Atlantic Forest. The region is well known by bird specialists as a critical spot for numerous globally endangered bird species. Boa Nova is an important site for other taxa, including mammals, reptiles, amphibians, insects and plants. However, basic ecological information for most species is preliminary at best. Despite its striking importance, the region has been suffering from deforestation and fragmentation and no conservation units are present, as forest remnants are privately owned. This situation puts the region among the top fifteen IBAs in the Brazilian Atlantic Forest Region. The protection of Boa Nova is a priority for conservation to avoid future extinction in the Atlantic Forests of Brazil. In order to gather much needed data on the distribution and abundance of endemic and threatened species of local flora and fauna, this project will conduct the first systematic survey of the biota of Boa Nova Forest remnants. This baseline research will support a broader conservation policy that will encompass the selection and establishment of conservation units, the diagnosis of vulnerable species and forest restoration. The results will increase public awareness among local communities, government agencies and NGOs of the importance of local forest patches.