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Effects of hydrological connectivity on floodplain fisheries in Amazonia

Grant number: 19/15550-2
Support type:Scholarships in Brazil - Post-Doctorate
Effective date (Start): August 01, 2019
Effective date (End): July 31, 2021
Field of knowledge:Interdisciplinary Subjects
Cooperation agreement: Belmont Forum
Principal Investigator:Evlyn Márcia Leão de Moraes Novo
Grantee:Carolina Tavares de Freitas
Home Institution: Instituto Nacional de Pesquisas Espaciais (INPE). Ministério da Ciência, Tecnologia, Inovações e Comunicações (Brasil). São José dos Campos , SP, Brazil
Associated research grant:18/12083-1 - Balancing biodiversity conservation with development in Amazon wetlands - bonds, AP.R

Abstract

Amazonian floodplains have great importance, both ecological and socioeconomic. These regions have been suffering major threats to their integrity, which range from the construction of hydroelectric dams to the impact of extreme events associated with climate change. Such threats not only affect the environment, and the biodiversity associated with it, but also the food security and financial sustainability of thousands of people living in those areas and depending directly on local resources. Fishing activities stand out in such scenario, since they correspond to the basis of subsistence and local economy, and suffer direct impacts from changes in the floodplains. Although signs of degradation are becoming more intense, and bringing serious consequences, little attention has been given so far to these critical environments. As such, this project aims to evaluate how the hydrological connectivity affects the fishing productivity of the floodplain lakes, in current conditions and in scenarios of global changes. To do so, we will collect fishing and habitat data in the field, and use advanced methods of statistical analysis to model the amount of fish from different species caught by fishermen in function of the respective levels of hydrological connectivity and data on vegetation, relief, water levels, lakes' depth and area, among other variables. We will also use products derived from hydroclimatic modeling, produced by collaborators, to assess the effect of climate change on lake connectivity and fishing. With our study, we expect to generate important information for supporting decision-making regarding the maintenance of the vast biodiversity and ecosystem services provided by Amazonian floodplains.