Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History

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Department ofBotany

Alice Tangerini

Kaieteur Falls, Photo C. Kelloff


Conservation International: Conservation International (CI) has been working in the Guianas for many years. In Guyana their efforts center around assiting in the design of a National Protected Areas System. BDG collaborates with CI in projects that involve using data from collections to evaluate areas for conservation purposes. In the past we worked together on a RAP of the Kanuku Mountains and the World Bank - GEF National Protected Areas System project, and BDG has helped to investigate areas in Guyana south of the 4th parallel.

Iwokrama International Centre for Rain Forest Conservation and Development: the Iwokrama program is administered by the Iwokrama International Centre since 1998. The principal aims of the Iwokrama Programme are to conserve biological diversity and demonstrate, through scientific research, methods of sustainable utilization of the forest for timber and other extractive resources. The BDG Program conducted a two year botanical inventory of the 3,880 sq. km Iwokrama Rainforest Reserve located in the center of the country, and has provided training to Guyanese and Amerindians.

Flora of the Guianas: The Flora of the Guianas project, which started in 1984, aims at publishing treatments of plant families occurring in the region. It is a cooperative project involving organizations focusing on systematic botany including Berlin, Cayenne (IRD), Georgetown, Kew, New York, Paramaribo, Paris, Utrecht, and Washington (Smithsonian). The Editorial Office in charge of publication is housed at the NHN-Utrecht.

Treaty of Amazonian Cooperation: The Treaty has funded cooperative visits between the staff of the Guyana National Zoo and the National Zoological Park in Washington, DC in animal health and public education. Also funded was UG student participation in the Smithsonian's International Biodiversity Measuring and Monitoring Course, and a BDG presented 2 week para-taxonomy training program in botany, zoology, and insects to Guyanese students and AmerIndians.

World Bank - GEF: GEF is consolidating the necessary floral and faunal data that will provide the scientific basis for the design and management of Guyana' National Protected Areas System and raise public awareness of conservation issues. Specimen data for over 30 genera of frogs, butterflies, termites, mammals, birds, and six families of plants has been gathered from Museums and Herbaria in many locations and analyzed using a Geographic Information System (GIS). Initial maps of species distributions will provide an estimate of the time and effort needed to gather additional data and perform field work to gain a good understanding of the biodiversity of Guyana.

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