ANGOLA: ALIVE WITH BIODIVERSITY RESEARCH OPPORTUNITIES

with Brian J Huntley (Centre for Invasion Biology, Stellenbosch University, South Africa) | February 2, 2018 – 15h00 | CIBIO-InBIO’s Auditorium, Campus de Vairão

CASUAL SEMINAR IN BIODIVERSITY AND EVOLUTION

 

 

Angola occupies only four percent of the terrestrial area of the African continent, yet it possesses the highest number of biomes of any African country. It is second only to mega-diverse South Africa in terms of the number of ecoregions represented within its borders. Despite this globally significant natural wealth, it remains one of the least well-documented countries in the world it terms of its biodiversity.

 

This presentation will give an overview of the country’s biodiversity with emphasis on the research progress made since the opening up of the country to expeditions by international partners since 2002. While some taxa remain very poorly documented, the knowledge base on others, such as butterflies (220 new species and subspecies recorded since 2002) and dragonflies (76 new species since 2009) has expanded dramatically.

 

Angola remains a country full of opportunities for biodiversity research. While current emphasis has been on building the knowledge base on faunal and floral occurrence and distribution, fundamental questions on ecosystem structure, functioning and dynamics at landscape scales need to be addressed. Some of the key questions awaiting investigation will be presented.

 

Brian J. Huntley is a conservationist with over 50 years of field research and management experience in many African countries and the Sub-Antarctic. Since 1970 he has been actively involved in research and conservation in Angola. Following retirement in 2009 as CEO of the South African National Biodiversity Institute, he is currently advising several African countries for various United Nations agencies. He is a Research Associate at the Centre for Invasion Biology, Stellenbosch University and an Emeritus Professor at the University of Cape Town. His latest book is Wildlife at War in Angola: the rise and fall of an African Eden. (Copies available at the seminar)

 

[Host: Raquel Godinho, Conservation Genetics and Wildlife Management]