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Neotropical snakes: biogeography, diversification and the role of the climatic niche in the recognition of risk areas for snakebites.

Grant number: 22/15106-8
Support Opportunities:Scholarships in Brazil - Doctorate
Effective date (Start): November 01, 2023
Effective date (End): February 28, 2027
Field of knowledge:Biological Sciences - Ecology
Principal Investigator:Thaís Barreto Guedes da Costa
Grantee:Ibrahim Kamel Rodrigues Nehemy
Host Institution: Instituto de Biologia (IB). Universidade Estadual de Campinas (UNICAMP). Campinas , SP, Brazil
Associated research grant:21/07161-6 - Evolution and biogeography of the herpetofauna: patterns, process and implications for conservation in a scenario of environmental and climate changes, AP.JP


Biogeography focuses on recognizing the processes and patterns that promote biodiversity distribution. On a large scale, these patterns are relatively well established, however, intracontinentally, there are still gaps in neotropical regions. Thus, there are new opportunities for studies that search to understand the processes that influence species distributions. Among the important processes for the Neotropical region are marine incursions, the uplift of the Andes, climatic fluctuations, and the closing of the Panama Isthmus. Biogeographic tools, such as Phylogeography and Species Distribution Modeling (SDMs), allow us to investigate historical agents that explain the distribution of species and even predict possible changes in their distribution, both in the past and future. Reptile fauna is of great importance for biogeographic research in Neotropical scenarios. In this context, the scarcity of information on studies that describe distribution patterns of venomous snakes and snakebites in South America reveals the necessity to obtain this knowledge to take measures relevant to public health. In addition, the genus Lygophis presents a group of species with a lack of studies regarding its evolutionary history, limiting the interpretation and understanding of historical processes on an intracontinental scale in neotropical regions. Given this panorama, we seek to solve these gaps to understand distribution and diversification patterns through time and space, using biogeographic tools, and to analyze the impact of climate change on venomous snake communities in South America.

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