The journal Phytotaxa published an article written by lead author Caroline Vasconcelos, a Ph.D. student at our Biological Dynamics of Forest Fragmentation Project (BDFFP), describing her discovery of a new species of tree, Pouteria kossmanniae in the Sapotaceae family. The tree grows in South America, and produces a small, edible fruit. Vasconcelos has found examples of the tree both in the BDFFP forest fragment study areas as well as in Manaus, the closest city to the reserve. Up until now, the tree was mistaken for another species in the same genus. Unfortunately, due in part to deforestation, and in part because individuals of this species have yet to be identified, it is already listed as "Endangered" according to the IUCN's classification system.
Vasconcelos' research was funded in part by the Thomas Lovejoy Research Fellowship Program, which was made possible through contributions from a generous ABC donor. The name of the species is a tribute to Dr. Isolde D. Kossmann Ferraz, a researcher at the National Institute for Amazonian Research (INPA), ABC's Brazilian institutional partner for the forest fragments project.
This is not the only recent discovery at the BDFFP. Vasconcelos and other BDFFP students are in the process of researching and validating the existence of other previously undiscovered species. Even after 40 years of scientific study, there are so many things yet to be discovered in the vast treasure trove that is our reserve in the Amazon rainforest.
Read the journal article abstract here: