It all started with the monkeys. What began as a research effort to understand the black lion tamarin, one of the rarest of the New World monkeys, has blossomed into a network of forest corridors providing income for hundreds of families living alongside the last remnants of Brazil’s Atlantic Forest. “Fifteen or 20 years ago, the region was a horrible thing. We could see dead nature,” Maria Regina dos Santos, leader of a seedling nursery in the region, told Mongabay. “Today everything is very beautiful. It has improved for the community, nurseries and animals.” Santos’s nursery supports the work of the Institute for Ecological Research (IPÊ), a Brazilian nonprofit that has, over the past 35 years, planted more than 2.7 million trees and reforested the largest Atlantic Forest wildlife corridor in Brazil. “It’s one of the only best examples I know of a conservation project and community engagement project that really had a scientific basis,” Robin Chazdon, a global restoration expert and professor at the University of the Sunshine Coast, Australia, told Mongabay. “It really kind of is an emblem of applied conservation biology.” The black Lion tamarin has been upgraded from critically endangered to endangered thanks to restoration efforts in Brazil’s Atlantic Forest. Photo by Roger Smith via Flickr (CC BY-NC 2.0). In a recent paper in the Royal Society Open Science journal, Chazdon and her colleagues tell the story of endangered species conservation and forest and landscape restoration in the Pontal do Paranapanema in Brazil’s Atlantic Forest. “I…This article was originally published on Mongabay Läs mer

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