Author: Kleber Del Claro,Paulo S. Oliveira,Victor Rico-Gray
Publisher: EOLSS Publications
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This Encyclopedia of Tropical Biology and Conservation Management is a component of the global Encyclopedia of Life Support Systems (EOLSS), which is an integrated compendium of twenty one Encyclopedias. Tropical environments cover the most part of still preserved natural areas of the Earth. The greatest biodiversity, as in terms of animals and plants, as microorganisms, is placed in these hot and rainy ecosystems spread up and below the Equator line. Additionally, the most part of food products, with vegetal or animal origin, that sustain nowadays human beings is direct or undirected dependent of tropical productivity. Biodiversity should be looked at and evaluated not only in terms of numbers of species, but also in terms of the diversity of interactions among distinct organisms that it maintains. In this sense, the complexity of web structure in tropical systems is a promise of future to nature preservation on Earth. In the chemicals of tropical plant and animals, could be the cure to infinite number of diseases, new food sources, and who knows what more. Despite these facts tropical areas have been exploited in an irresponsible way for more than 500 years due the lack of an ecological conscience of men. Exactly in the same way we did with temperate areas and also tropical areas in the north of Equator line. Nowadays, is estimated that due human exploitation, nation conflicts and social problems, less than 8% of tropical nature inside continental areas is still now untouchable. The extension of damage in the tropical areas of oceans is unknown. Thus so, all knowledge we could accumulate about tropical systems will help us, as in the preservations of these important and threatened ecosystems as in a future recuperation, when it was possible. Only knowing the past and developing culture, mainly that directed to peace, to a better relationship among nations and responsible use and preservation of natural resources, human beings will have a long future on Earth. These volumes, Tropical Biology and Natural Resources was divided in sessions to provide the reader the better comprehension possible of issue and also to enable future complementation and improvements in the encyclopedia. Like we work with life, we intended to transform this encyclopedia also in a “life” volume, in what new information could be added in any time. As president of the encyclopedia and main editor I opened the theme with an article titled: “Tropical Biology and Natural resources: Historical Pathways and Perspectives”, providing the reader an initial view of the origins of human knowledge about the tropical life, and what we hope to the future. In the sequence we have more than 100 chapters distributed in tem sessions: Tropical Ecology (TE); Tropical Botany (TB); Tropical Zoology (TZ); Savannah Ecosystems (SE); Desert Ecosystems (DE); Tropical Agriculture (TA); Natural History of Tropical Plants (NH); Human Impact on Tropical Ecosystems (HI); Tropical Phytopathology and Entomology (TPE); Case Studies (CS). This 11-volume set contains several chapters, each of size 5000-30000 words, with perspectives, applications and extensive illustrations. It is the only publication of its kind carrying state-of-the-art knowledge in the fields of Tropical Biology and Conservation Management and is aimed, by virtue of the several applications, at the following five major target audiences: University and College Students, Educators, Professional Practitioners, Research Personnel and Policy Analysts, Managers, and Decision Makers and NGOs.