Programs and Projects

Ongoing conservation research
Through cutting-edge studies, scientists at the BDFFP reserve are learning about the impacts of habitat isolation, edge effects, and movement corridors on a diverse array of Amazonian plants, animals and ecological processes.  

Studies of forest regeneration
Using satellite imagery, geographic information systems, and a network of monitoring stations, scientists are studying how forests across Central Amazonia grow in order to understand what factors are most critical for optimum forest regeneration and carbon storage.  Since its inception in 1979, the forest fragments project has monitored 94 hectares (232 acres) of forest plots.  Every five years, the project conducts a tree census, tagging, collecting data on, and cataloging every tree larger than 10 cm in diameter.  The data is then compiled into a database -- the longest-running dataset of its kind -- to enable researchers to study the long-term effects of ecosystem fragmentation on individual trees and as collectives.

Conservation training and capacity building
The BDFFP has an award-winning training program that operates four annual field courses for Amazonian undergraduates, graduates, environmental decision makers and environmental managers.  Hundreds of Brazilian and Latin-American scientists and resource managers have benefited from these courses and from research training and internships at the BDFFP. Many of these individuals are now in leading positions in Brazilian state and federal governments, research institutes and nongovernmental organizations.

Educating Amazonian planners and conservation managers
Decision makers that plan and implement human development projects in Amazonia often have only a very basic knowledge of key ecological and landscape design concepts. The BDFFP works with brings these decision makers to the reserve to ensure that cutting-edge, reserve- and corridor-design principles are incorporated into real-life, land-use planning in Brazil.

The BDFFP sponsors intensive training courses for Amazonian decision makers and for Amazonian reserve managers. These workshops provide practical principles for corridor design and reserve management, and highlight critical threats to specific forests and reserves in the region. In this way, the BDFFP plays a key role in disseminating practical knowledge of direct relevance to conservation in the region.