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Open Access April 29, 2024 Endnote/Zotero/Mendeley (RIS) BibTeX

Floristic composition of vascular epiphytes in a disturbed forest of the Douala- Edea National Park (Cameroon)

Abstract The Douala-Edea National Park is a coastal protected area that opens to the Atlantic Ocean, and contains an abundant wildlife which finds a privilege habitat there, and certain taxa such as epiphytes, which are of particular interest for conservation. In many tropical forests, vascular epiphytes are one of the richest taxa, with major impacts on the nutrient and hydrological cycles. The aim of this research was to study the effect of the disturbance of habitat on the floristic composition of vascular epiphytes in the Douala-Edea National Park. This study was carried out between January - April 2021 in three types of disturbed habitats at the northern part of the park. Three plots of 100 m × 100 m dimensions were laid out across three ecosystems along the Sanaga river. The sampling method consisted in the direct observation of five adjacent transects of 100 m x 20 m dimensions inside each plot. Epiphytes species were evaluated on all trees of DBH ≥10 cm. Epiphytes' life-forms and the position on the host trees occupied by the epiphytes were also recorded. A total of 18 species belonging to 16 genera and 13 families were identified. Culcasia sp. was the most common species with a relative frequency of 30.27%. Biological indicators were represented by Ferns, with four species, and Orchidaceae, with one species. [...] Read more.
The Douala-Edea National Park is a coastal protected area that opens to the Atlantic Ocean, and contains an abundant wildlife which finds a privilege habitat there, and certain taxa such as epiphytes, which are of particular interest for conservation. In many tropical forests, vascular epiphytes are one of the richest taxa, with major impacts on the nutrient and hydrological cycles. The aim of this research was to study the effect of the disturbance of habitat on the floristic composition of vascular epiphytes in the Douala-Edea National Park. This study was carried out between January - April 2021 in three types of disturbed habitats at the northern part of the park. Three plots of 100 m × 100 m dimensions were laid out across three ecosystems along the Sanaga river. The sampling method consisted in the direct observation of five adjacent transects of 100 m x 20 m dimensions inside each plot. Epiphytes species were evaluated on all trees of DBH ≥10 cm. Epiphytes' life-forms and the position on the host trees occupied by the epiphytes were also recorded. A total of 18 species belonging to 16 genera and 13 families were identified. Culcasia sp. was the most common species with a relative frequency of 30.27%. Biological indicators were represented by Ferns, with four species, and Orchidaceae, with one species. The epiphytes species richness was highest in the low disturbed habitat (13 species), and lowest in the highly disturbed habitat (8 species). Strict epiphytes were highly recorded in the low disturbed habitat (6 species), and were absent in the highly disturbed habitat. Hemi-epiphytes were the commonest life-form (12 species) in the highly disturbed habitat, and have been defined as indicators of the perturbation of the habitat. Canopy was mostly sollicitated by epiphytes in the low disturbed habitat (66.25%) than the moderate disturbed habitat (49.85%), and highly disturbed habitat (30.66%). It has been found that the different forest sites have an influence on the typology of epiphytic species, and therefore, epiphytic flora should be managed for the conservation of the biodiversity in tropical forests.
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Open Access April 25, 2024 Endnote/Zotero/Mendeley (RIS) BibTeX

Green spaces more adapted and resilient to the current and future climatic conditions in the south of Portugal (Algarve): Xerophytic gardens using xeromorphic succulents

Abstract Considering the current climate conjuncture, it is a consensus that green spaces in large contemporary urban areas should be increasingly more numerous and simultaneously more sustainable, being adapted to the edaphoclimatic conditions of the site, and with reduced maintenance costs. In the case of Algarve, where this research is focused, the current and future water availability, assumes a [...] Read more.
Considering the current climate conjuncture, it is a consensus that green spaces in large contemporary urban areas should be increasingly more numerous and simultaneously more sustainable, being adapted to the edaphoclimatic conditions of the site, and with reduced maintenance costs. In the case of Algarve, where this research is focused, the current and future water availability, assumes a preponderant role in the design of green spaces, where the demands mentioned above can only be achieved if we deviate from conventional landscape practices and develop holistic strategies of management and design of green spaces that integrate different areas of knowledge and not merely aesthetic issues. In this context, this work aims to develop more adapted and resilient landscaping practices to the current and future climatic conditions of the Algarve, thus reinventing the concept of landscaping in the south of Portugal. Thus, it will be of paramount importance to develop more sustainable, resilient and tolerant projects to worsening ecological conditions, particularly limitations associated with water availability. The xeromorphic succulents are a group of plants with mechanisms of tolerance to water stress and with very specific characteristics, being succulence one of the most relevant. Studies on these mechanisms are increasingly frequent, which may prove to be very advantageous in our adaptation to future climatic challenges. In addition, their ornamental potential is enormous, since their bold forms and colours are a veritable sensory explosion, which, combined with their morphological and physiological characteristics, make them the species of choice in the reconversion or creation of xerophytic gardens.
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Open Access March 08, 2024 Endnote/Zotero/Mendeley (RIS) BibTeX

Analysis of Toxic Contaminants in Agriculture: Educational Strategies to Avoid Their Influence on Food

Abstract A diagnosis of the current state of the crops is made regarding the control of weeds, use of pesticides, fungicides; with an assessment of the state of the plant covers in the crop, and its control by different types of herbicides, and we detected a high loss of biological diversity; and some of these compounds are mentioned due to their high toxicity. Similarly, the use of pesticides and [...] Read more.
A diagnosis of the current state of the crops is made regarding the control of weeds, use of pesticides, fungicides; with an assessment of the state of the plant covers in the crop, and its control by different types of herbicides, and we detected a high loss of biological diversity; and some of these compounds are mentioned due to their high toxicity. Similarly, the use of pesticides and fungicides is discussed due to their repercussions on health. In order to avoid the unhealthiness caused by the applications of these products, phytosanitary and educational control strategies are proposed; promoting the inspection of fruit and vegetable markets, and modifying the contents in higher professional and university education. To this end, we propose an active teaching methodology, through which the student acquires skills and responsibility for the use of chemical agents in agriculture, which serves to prevent the entry of these contaminants into the food chain. Of the different polluting chemical agents, in the case of herbicides we highlight Oxyfluorfen and Glyphosate with high toxicity and whose consumption is very high. In the case of pesticides and fungicides, among others are Organochlorine compounds, which have been detected in blood, and Carbon Tetrachloride and Chloroform, considered potent hepatotoxic and neurotoxic. The basic objective of this study is the awareness and acquisition of knowledge by future teachers about polluting agents, which will subsequently have an impact on society.
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Open Access December 19, 2023 Endnote/Zotero/Mendeley (RIS) BibTeX

Conservation of Cuabal from Community Environmental Education: Results of an Implemented Proposal

Abstract The spiny xeromorphic shrublands on serpentine (cuabales) constitute outstanding plant formations for the conservation of Cuban biodiversity, due to their floristic richness, high number of endemic species and local endemism, as well as their economic, social, cultural value and functions environmental. In the Callejón de Los Patos of Santa Clara, there are relicts of cuabal, although they show a [...] Read more.
The spiny xeromorphic shrublands on serpentine (cuabales) constitute outstanding plant formations for the conservation of Cuban biodiversity, due to their floristic richness, high number of endemic species and local endemism, as well as their economic, social, cultural value and functions environmental. In the Callejón de Los Patos of Santa Clara, there are relicts of cuabal, although they show a high level of deterioration due to human activity. This article presents the main results of an investigation, which focused on implementing actions for the development of Community Environmental Education, with emphasis on the conservation of cuabal, in Callejón de Los Patos. For the intervention process, the Community Self-Development Methodology was used, which is qualitative par excellence, and the investigative methods: document analysis, participant observation, in-depth, group and structured interviews, drawing directed, the reflective group, techniques group and triangulation of data. The main results of the research are: the diagnosis and implementation of actions, designed from the process of Community Environmental Education, which was developed at the Carlos Manuel de Céspedes National Rural School, of said settlement. During the intervention process, the development of cognitive, procedural and attitudinal knowledge for the conservation of cuabal was verified in the schoolchildren, contributing to the strengthening of the school as the most important cultural center of the community, as aspired in the Cuban National Education System.
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