Department of Geography and the Environment

Ecological Biogeography in the Amazon Basin: Can We Scale Up? A talk by Dr. Lars Pomara

Fri, March 23, 2012 | GRG 102

4:00 PM - 5:00 PM

Birds and study sites in the western Amazon
Birds and study sites in the western Amazon

Dr. Lars Pomara will present recent findings and future directions of his research on Amazonian bird biogeography.

Amazonian landscapes show extraordinary biogeographic pattern. Recent studies have resulted in a new appreciation for the degree to which unique species occupy special habitats in complex spatial configurations. Most explanations for the occupancy of Amazonian habitats by particular species refer to local ecological processes in combination with biogeographic and geomorphologic processes that occur across much larger spatial and temporal scales, such as the uplift of the Andes Mountains and the formation of the Amazon River system itself.

Conversely, patterns in Amazonian species distributions at this whole-basin scale are not well explained, but new information concerning local species-habitat relationships may provide insights if it can be scaled-up to explain species distributions in relation to long-term physical geographic process. Doing so will help integrate ecological and evolutionary biogeography across landscape and continental scales.

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