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Biodiversity pp 289-312 | Cite as

Geoecology and biodiversity — Problems and perspectives for the management of the natural resources of Bolivia’s forest and savanna ecosystems

  • Werner Hanagarth
  • Andrzej Szwagrzak
Chapter

Abstract

A brief review of geoecology, biodiversity and biogeography is given, as well as a discussion of the problems and options for the natural resource management of Bolivia’s forests and savannas.

The high level of biodiversity in Bolivia’s forests and savannas is due to its geographical position that borders a tropical climate and is closely related to strong longitudinal and altitudinal gradients. Soil conditions and hydrology in combination with regional geology are strong determinants for biogeography and diversity. Bolivia is not located in the heart of any of the main neotropical biotas. The general high biodiversity of Amazonian ecosystems in juxtaposition with other very different floras and faunas is the reason for Bolivia’s high diversity.

In many regions of Bolivia, low soil fertility, floods and geomorphology make it difficult to improve land utilization, but the chances are good for seeing management of forests and savannas implemented. In recent years, the Bolivian government has opened up to reform and is creating the foundation necessary for natural resource management. The low human population-forest and savanna ratio meets the prerequisites for the management of natural ecosystems. The past policy of “free” land has affected ecologically sensible planning up to the present. Timber logging, colonization and agro-business accelerated the exploitation of extant areas.

Nevertheless, there are options for the sustainable management of the country’s forests, that also take various constraints and restrictions into consideration. In fact, Bolivia’s savannas have the best prospects for implementing wildlife management programs based on a few economically promising species in the near future.

Keywords

Natural Resource Management Cold Wave Game Species Game Management Bolivian Government 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

Geo-ecología y biodiversidad — Problemas y perspectivos para el manejo de los recursos naturales de los ecosistemas del bosque y la sabanas de Bolivia

Resumen

Se ofrece una breve visión de la geoecología, la biodiversidad y la biogeografía, así como una discusión sobre los problemas y alternativas para el manejo de los recursos naturales de los bosques y las sabanas de Bolivia.

El alto grado de biodiversidad en los bosques y sabanas bolivianos se debe a su posición geográfica fronteriza con un clima tropical y guarda una estrecha relación con fuertes gradientes longitudinales y altitudinales. Las condiciones del suelo y la hidrología, en combinación con la geología regional determinan decisivamente la biogeografía y la diversidad. Bolivia no se encuentra en el centro de ninguna de las principales biotas neotropicales. La alta diversidad de Bolivia es causada por la biodiversidad generalmente alta del ecosistema amazónico en yuxtaposición con otras floras y faunas muy diferentes.

En muchas regiones de Bolivia, el bajo grado de fertilidad del suelo, las inundaciones y la geomorfología dificultan una mejora del uso de la tierra, pero existen buenas perspectivas de cara a una implementación del manejo de bosques y sabanas. En los últimos anos, el gobierno boliviano se ha mostrado abierto a reformas y está creando Ia base necesaria para el manejo de los recursos naturales. La baja proporción de población humana en bosques y sabanas responde a los prerrequisitos para el manejo de ecosistemas naturales. La política de tierra “libre” seguida en el pasado ha dificultado hasta ahora el ejercicio de una planificación preocupada por la ecologia. La tala de madera, la colonización y la industria agraria acelero la explotación de áreas aún existentes.

Sin embargo, existen posibilidades para el manejo sostenible de los bosques dei país, posibilidades que contemplen también varias restricciones y limitaciones. De hecho, las sabanas de Bolivia cuentan con las mejores perpectivas para la implementación en un futuro próximo de programas de manejo de la vida salvaje basados en unas pocas especies económicamente prometedoras.

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2001

Authors and Affiliations

  • Werner Hanagarth
    • 1
  • Andrzej Szwagrzak
    • 2
  1. 1.Institute of EcologyLa PazBolivia
  2. 2.Green Cross of BoliviaLa PazBolivia

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