|Town/Region||Fazenda São Nicolau ONF Brasil|
|Continent||Central and Latin America|
|Categories||Forests, Mammals, Plants, Primates|
|Date||11 Jul 2018|
This study will be conducted at Fazenda São Nicolau at the Cotriguaçu municipality, Mato Grosso, Brazil. FSN is located in the Amazon forest, on the left bank of the Juruena River, a tributary of Tapajós. We aim to investigate how plant species of fleshy fruits occurring in different population densities are affected by frugivores, mainly the large-bodied primates black-faced black spider monkey (Ateles chamek) and Geoffroy's Woolly Monkey (Lagothrix cana). Both species are endangered due to hunting and deforestation.
Considering that fungi pathogens are an important source of plant mortality in early life stages in tropical forests (e.g. damping off and rotting of seedlings), we intend to understand the role played by frugivore mammals in reducing fungi infestation and, consequently, increasing germination and recruitment success of different Brazilian Amazon tree species in a continuous tropical forest. We will conduct field experiments simulating frugivore treatments (pulp removal, gut passage and removal from conspecifics) on seeds of different plant species. The results would provide insights on how plant species with different adult densities depend on primate treatments. The combination of field experiments aiming to test the effect of frugivore manipulation on seed germination and seedling recruitment in addition to the field data on seed dispersal quantity and deposition site by the two primate species should help to better understand the contribution of large-bodied primates for the dispersal effectiveness of plants with specific characteristics.
We will quantify and detail the seed dispersal services (contribution to plant early recruitment and carbon storage potential) provided by both monkeys in a well-preserved area of Amazon rainforest. The primates feeding behaviour data will be used by SouthWild to implement a primate observational tourism plan. We consider that the monetary approach of carbon market and the tourism infrastructure will gather attention from decision-makers as it contributes to promoting local economy.
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