• Data on spatio-temporal patterns of wild fruit harvest from the economically important palm Mauritia flexuosa in the Peruvian Amazon

      Endress, Bryan A.; Gilmore, Michael P.; Vargas Paredes, Victor H.; Horn, Christa M. (2018)
      These data are the foundation of the analyses and results published in the article “Spatio-temporal patterns of Mauritia flexuosa fruit extraction in the Peruvian Amazon: Implications for conservation and sustainability” (Horn et al., 2018) [1]. Here we include data on the volume of M. flexuosa fruit arriving in the city of Iquitos, Peru from the surrounding region. This includes the amount of fruit (in sacks and kg), the date of entry into Iquitos, the point of embarkation (watershed and coordinates), the method of transportation and the point of entry into Iquitos. Data is provided in a number of formats, including data tables, Google Earth KML files and summary tables by watershed and/or month.
    • Ecology, livelihoods, and management of the Mauritia flexuosa palm in South America

      Virapongse, Arika; Endress, Bryan A.; Gilmore, Michael P.; Horn, Christa M.; Romulo, Chelsie (2017)
      Mauritia flexuosa is a key ecological and economic palm found throughout tropical South America. To inform improved management of M. flexuosa, we conducted a systematic review of published information about the ecology, livelihoods, and management of M. flexuosa, synthesized the information and identified knowledge gaps, and analyzed the spatial distribution of publications. A total of 143 documents (primary research, literature reviews, and grey literature) were reviewed. Most published information originates from Peru and Brazil, with a disproportionate number of documents based in the Loreto Department of Peru. Significant geographical gaps in published information exist, especially in the northern portion of the species range. Existing literature emphasizes M. flexuosa fruit, although leaves, oil, and other products play important roles economically. To improve M. flexuosa management, we recommend that future research focuses on: (1) M. flexuosa availability; (2) harvest and cultivation; (3) development of consistent methods and standards; (4) landscape-level issues like land use change; (5) M. flexuosa within broader systems; (6) spatial gaps in research; (7) long-term research; and (8) multi- and interdisciplinary approaches.
    • Efectos del manejo tradicional sobre la palma Brahea aculeata en una selva seca del sur de Sonora, México

      López-Toledo, Leonel; Espinosa-Hidalgo, Carlos; Horn, Christa M.; Endress, Bryan A. (2015)
      En este estudio se evaluaron los efectos del manejo tradicional de Brahea aculeata (Arecaceae), sobre algunos atributos funcionales (hojas totales, producción y tamaño de hojas) y demográficos (mortalidad, crecimiento y reproducción). Las hojas de la especie son utilizadas para techos de casas y artesanías; y debido al pastoreo libre de ganado vacuno en el bosque, la especie puede sufrir herbivoría. Para evaluar los efectos del pastoreo y la cosecha de hojas se estableció un experimento en la Reserva “Sierra de Álamos”, Sonora, México, en el que se simularon las diferentes prácticas del manejo tradicional. Se establecieron seis tratamientos que combinan el pastoreo (con/sin) e intensidades de cosecha (sin cosecha/baja/intensiva). En general, en palmas pequeñas (≤ 200 cm de largo de tallo), se encontraron efectos interactivos del pastoreo y la cosecha de hojas, mientras que en palmas grandes (> 200 cm) únicamente para la cosecha. En palmas pequeñas se encontraron efectos negativos en el número y tamaño de hojas; mientras que la producción de hojas, la mortalidad y el crecimiento, el efecto fue positivo. Para palmas grandes, el efecto fue positivo en todos los casos; excepto en la mortalidad, en los que no se encontraron efectos. Los efectos positivos se podrían explicar como una respuesta sobrecompensatoria en la que la pérdida de área foliar se puede suplir mediante la alteración de procesos relacionados con la fotosíntesis y/o la asignación de recursos. Este estudio contribuye con información útil para el establecimiento de un programa de manejo, basado en el aprovechamiento tradicional de la especie en el área.
    • Mauritia flexuosa palm swamps: Composition, structure and implications for conservation and management

      Endress, Bryan A.; Horn, Christa M.; Gilmore, Michael P. (2013)
      Swamp forests dominated by the dioecious palm, Mauritia flexuosa, cover vast areas of the Amazon Basin and are poorly studied despite their recognized ecological and economic importance. This knowledge gap confounds current conservation and management efforts. In this study, we documented overstory structure and composition of M. flexuosa palm swamps (aguajales) as part of a broader effort to understand their ecology and assist in developing best practices for multi-use management for the Maijuna, an indigenous group in Loreto, Peru.…
    • Seed dynamics of an endemic palm in a Northwestern Mexican tropical dry forest: implications for population spatial structure

      López-Toledo, Leonel; Portillo-Cruz, Y.; Pulido, M.T.; Endress, Bryan A. (2013)
      Seed dynamics are an important part of the life history of plants and may have strong implications on abundance and spatial distribution of populations. In this study, we explored how seed dynamics (removal, predation, germination) interact with micro-environmental conditions to affect the spatial structure of populations of Brahea aculeata (Arecaceae) in a tropical dry forest. B. aculeata is distributed throughout arroyo basins and attains its highest densities near to arroyos/rivers....
    • Spatio-temporal patterns of Mauritia flexuosa fruit extraction in the Peruvian Amazon: Implications for conservation and sustainability

      Horn, Christa M.; Vargas Paredes, Victor H.; Gilmore, Michael P.; Endress, Bryan A. (2018)
      In the Amazon Basin, some non-timber forest products (NTFPs), such as the ecologically and economically important palm Mauritia flexuosa, are extracted intensively and across large areas – the ecological effect of which is unclear. In this study, we sought to better understand the scale and scope of M. flexuosa fruit harvest in the Peruvian Amazon, the destructive harvest of which has caused conservation concern for decades, by collecting data on the amounts and origins of the fruit entering the city of Iquitos, Peru – making harvest patterns spatially and temporally explicit for the first time....
    • The socio-cultural importance of Mauritia flexuosa palm swamps (aguajales) and implications for multi-use management in two Maijuna communities of the Peruvian Amazon

      Gilmore, Michael P.; Endress, Bryan A.; Horn, Christa M. (2013)
      Background Fruit from the palm Mauritia flexuosa (aguaje) is harvested throughout the Peruvian Amazon for subsistence and commercial purposes. Recent estimates suggest that residents of Iquitos, the largest city in the region, consume approximately 148.8 metric tons of aguaje fruit per month, the vast majority of which is harvested by felling and killing adult female trees. In this study, we sought to better understand and document the importance of M. flexuosa palm swamps (aguajales) in two Maijuna indigenous communities to inform the sustainable management of this habitat and species. Methods Semi-structured interviews, focus groups, and household surveys were carried out to assess the significance of aguajales and their associated plant and animal resources as well as to determine how the relationship that the Maijuna have with aguajales has changed over time. Results Aguajales and their associated resources are culturally significant and useful to the Maijuna in a wide variety of ways. In addition to M. flexuosa, the Maijuna use over 60 different species of plants from aguajales. When M. flexuosa is in fruit, aguajales are important hunting areas with a total of 20 different animal species hunted. The Maijuna also have traditional beliefs about aguajales, believing that malevolent supernatural beings reside in them. Notably, the relationship that the Maijuna have with aguajales has changed considerably over the years as aguaje fruit went from a subsistence item collected opportunistically from the ground to a market good destructively harvested beginning in the early 1990s. The Maijuna are concerned not only about how this has affected the future commercial harvest of aguaje but also about its effects on game animals given the importance of hunting to Maijuna cultural identity, subsistence, and income generation. Conclusions In order to meet the multiple socio-cultural and economic needs of the Maijuna, sustainable management efforts must be expanded to not only focus on the commercial harvest of aguaje but also other facets of their relationship with this habitat. Our study suggests that the research and development of multi-use forest management plans must not be restricted to commercial forest products and ecosystem services given that many communities rely on tropical forests for a wide range of non-market cultural, economic, and subsistence goods and services.