Añihue Reserve

Prominent researchers from different areas of the National Museum of Natural History in Chile (MNHN), made a prospective visit to the Añihue Reserve the first days of December.

The MNHN team, consisting of botanist Gloria Rojas, the anthropologist-archaeologist Christian Becker, expert in zoology and herpetology Herman Nuñez and Jose Yañez, deputy director of the Museum and zoology and mastology specialist, spent a week in the Añihue Reserve in order to evaluate its potential in relation to the future development of systematic studies.

The main objective of the MNHN members was to develop a first prospective visit, incorporating a wide range of topics that could be assessed against their potential to constitute a contribution to knowledge of the Añihue Reserve. Also, evaluate the infrastructure and current development strategy, sharing a comparative view of the natural wealth of the Reserve in relation to the rest of the region and to propose some actions to initiate an ongoing relationship with the MNHN for the development of systematic studies on the property.

The expedition was very productive in relation to the diversity of topics covered, all preliminarily but with great future prospects.

In the botanical area, Gloria Rojas highlighted the presence of a large diversity of species worth studying in depth, such as wild orchids, bamboos, mosses, lichens and epiphytes.

In another area, Christian Becker confirmed the existence of anthropological sites,described to contain relevant or permanent occupation traces, dating back a thousand years ago, such as the middens in Añihue Bay and burial remains near its border.

In relation to zoology, observation walks were conducted to determine the presence of reptiles, amphibians, birds and mammals trails in the area nearest to the Reserve. Herman Nuñez and Jose Yañez, confirmed the richness of the domain and most likely in number of individuals and biomass, it has birds, followed by mammals.

Finally, the experts concluded that the Añihué Reserve has features that deserve to be studied in greater depth and its contribution to scientific knowledge of the various environments that makes up the property is potentially very significant. It is proposed, as a next step, that we should develop a base line, which ought to start by inviting the visit of specialists in mosses, epiphytes, lichens, entomology and hydrobiology. Also, the experts said that the existing infrastructure has enormous value and empowering the development of systematic studies in an area that only transporting the equipment is a challenge that often limits the scientific effort in the region.


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