Articles Biogeographic Patterns and Conservation in the South American Cerrado: A Tropical Savanna Hotspot JOSÉ MARIA CARDOSO DA SILVA AND JOHN M. BATES ropical savannas cover between 15 and 24.6 x 6 2 T10 square kilometers (km )of the land surface in South THE CERRADO, WHICH INCLUDES BOTH America, Africa, and Asia. Most people know these savannas FOREST AND SAVANNA HABITATS, IS THE because of their unique assemblages of abundant and exquisite wildlife; however, they have only recently begun to receive the SECOND LARGEST SOUTH AMERICAN kind of attention from a conservation viewpoint that has been given to tropical rain forests (Myers et al. 2000). The BIOME, AND AMONG THE MOST largest, richest, and possibly most threatened tropical sa- vanna in the world is the Cerrado, a large region that occu- THREATENED ON THE CONTINENT pies the center of South America. In an effort to identify the world’s most important biodiversity hotspots, Myers and colleagues (2000) ranked the Cerrado among the 25 most im- portant terrestrial hotspots. It is the only region on their list along the rivers or in small isolated patches. In contrast, in large dominated by tropical savannas. The biodiversity of the Cer- forested regions such
BioScience – Oxford University Press
Published: Mar 1, 2002
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