TROPINET, Vol. 10, No. 3, September 1999

Association for Tropical Biology on the World Wide Web at ATB members may want to check their listings in the Membership Directory posted on the homepage

ATB Presidential Address, St. Louis, MO; August 2, 1999

By Paulo S. Oliveira, Dept. de Zoologia, Universidade Estadual de Campinas, 13083-970 Campinas SP, Brazil.

Twelve years ago, in a paper entitled "The Little Things that Run the World", E. O. Wilson (1987: 344) stated that "... when you walk through a tropical forest (...), vertebrates may catch your eye most of the time (...) but your are visiting a primarily invertebrate world". Wilson further pointed out that while vertebrates may be important in certain ecosystems such as the African savannas, the so-called little things are the primary movers of the earth. For example, in the Brazilian Amazon forest invertebrates account for over 90% of the total animal biomass -- ants and termites alone make up one third of this biomass (Fittkau & Klinge 1973).

When we think of the dispersal mechanisms used by shrubs and trees in tropical forests, however, we realize that most plants rely on fleshy diaspores which attract vertebrate frugivores. In fact, nearly 90% of the shrubs and trees in tropical forests may depend on vertebrates for seed dispersal (Frankie et al. 1974). Although a huge amount of fleshy seeds and fruits is available in the canopy, a large portion reaches the ground with the aril or pulp attached. Seed rain at the La Selva Biological Station in Costa Rica, for example, is estimated as 49 seeds/m2.month -- most of which are vertebrate-dispersed (Denslow & Gomez Diaz 1990). Fleshy fruits and seeds can reach the ground by falling directly from the tree, by being dropped by frugivores, or within defecation of the latter. Given that each hectare of rainforest soil contains over 8 million ant workers, these insects are by far the most likely organisms to encounter fleshy diaspores on the ground of tropical habitats. Here I briefly discuss how ant activity at fallen fleshy diaspores can affect seed fate in tropical habitats. Data on ant-diaspore interactions from two major Brazilian biomes -- the 'cerrado' savanna, and the Atlantic rainforest -- indicate that plant dispersal systems mediated primarily by vertebrate frugivores can also be markedly affected by ant activity once the fleshy diaspore falls to the ground.

Monthly surveys in both vegetation types indicate that ants interact with fallen fleshy diaspores from many plant species in different families. In the cerrado, 19 species of fungus-growing ants (Attini) collect fruit pulp or seed aril from 26 plant species in 19 families, and utilize this material for fungus-culturing inside the nest (Leal & Oliveira 1998). In the Atlantic rainforest, 36 ant species (including attines) use fallen fleshy diaspores from 56 plant species in 28 families (Pizo & Oliveira 1999). A series of field and greenhouse experiments have shown that ants can carry seeds up to 12 m, and that removal of fruit pulp or seed aril by ants can protect the seed against fungal attack in the leaf litter, as well as increase germination success in several plant species. For example, caging experiments with the lipid-rich arillate seeds of Cabralea canjerana (Meliaceae), a typical bird-dispersed tree in the Atlantic rainforest, indicate that ants remove 50% of the seeds found on the forest floor. Predominantly predatory ants (Ponerinae) are the main seed vectors, possibly probably because the lipid-rich aril of Cabralea is chemically very similar to insect prey (Pizo & Oliveira 1988). Experimental results with another bird-dispersed tree bearing arillate seeds, Clusia criuva (Clusiaceae), have further demonstrated that ant-induced seed movements can markedly affect seedling establishment in the Atlantic rainforest. Clusia seedlings are more abundant close to ponerine nests than at adjacent sites without such nests (Passos & Oliveira 1999).

In conclusion, ants are major consumers and removers of fallen fleshy diaspores in tropical habitats, and such activity can benefit the plant in several ways. The emerging pattern is that plant dispersal systems based primarily on vertebrate frugivores can be much more complex than previously thought, and that ant activity at fallen fleshy diaspores can markedly affect seed fate and seedling establishment in tropical habitats. Given the overwhelming abundance of ants in tropical habitats, and the huge amount of food available on the ground in the form of fleshy diaspores, ants may likely influence seed biology and dispersal ecology of a previously unsuspected number of primarily vertebrate-dispersed plants in the tropics. As mentioned by Wilson (1987), the biology of most invertebrate species is unknown, and we have only the vaguest idea of their feeding habits, natural enemies, and potential utility to humanity. Our ignorance is particularly vast in the tropical region. The future of tropical biology relies more and more on the collection of accurate natural history data of organisms within systems of particular interest. Factual knowledge of organisms should allow us to address successfully a number of practical problems, from pest management to conservation (Futuyma 1998).


Denslow, J.S & A.E. Gomez Diaz. 1990. Canadian Journal of Forestry Research 20:642-648.

Fittkau, E.J. & H. Klinge. 1973. Biotropica 5:2-14.

Frankie, E.J., H.G. Baker & P.A. Opler. 1974. Journal of Ecology 62:881-919.

Futuyma, D.J. 1998. American Naturalist 151:1-6.

Leal, I.R. & P.S. Oliveira. 1998. Biotropica 30:170-178.

Passos, L. & P.S. Oliveira. 1999. XVI International Botanical Congress, Abstract no. 1254.

Pizo, M.A. & P.S. Oliveira. 1998. American Journal of Botany 85:669-674.

Pizo, M.A. & P.S. Oliveira. 1999. Biotropica (in press).

Wilson, E.O. 1987. Conservation Biology 1:344-346.


New Editor Sought for Tropinet. ATB, OTS and STRI seek a new editor for this newsletter. Please contact Beth Braker, Email: for details.
Tropical Marine Laboratories. Tropinet is assembling a list of tropical marine facilities, where "tropical" is defined as: "between the tropics, within the limit of reef-building corals, and with minimum winter water-temperature of 20 C". Please send contact information and a brief description of your facility to: Beth Braker, Editor, Tropinet, Department of Biology, Occidental College, 1600 Campus Road, Los Angeles CA 90041. Email:


Gentry projects continue at Missouri Botanical Garden. Botanist Alwyn H. Gentry died in a tragic plane crash on 3 August 1993 in western Ecuador. The Missouri Botanical Garden continues its efforts to bring many of Gentry's projects to conclusion. In his study of diversity and floristic composition of the world's forests, Gentry and his collaborators surveyed nearly 250 sites on six continents, establishing and collecting data from 0.1 ha. transects. A review of these studies has been compiled by James Miller, Oliver Phillips, and Nancy Hediger. The raw data is available on the Garden's WWW site: The data for each site are being analyzed, and a volume summarizing the results will be published by MBG. In addition to summarizing the transect data, the book will review the historical development of Gentry's ecological studies, the methods by which the data were collected, and their significance in contributing toward our understanding of global patterns of plant diversity. --Missouri Botanical Garden. Tel: 314-577-5169. Fax: 314-577-0830.

Home Depot to Stop Selling Old Growth Wood. Home Depot will end sales of wood from endangered areas by the end of 2002. Home Depot is currently the world's largest retailer of old growth wood products. For the past two years, forest protection leader Rainforest Action Network (RAN) has led an international campaign urging Home Depot to stop selling old growth wood. The array of old growth products Home Depot currently carries includes lumber from the ancient temperate rainforests of British Columbia, old growth lauan and ramin from Southeast Asia, and bigleaf mahogany from the Amazon. Home Depot sells less than 10 percent of the lumber in the world, but is still the largest single retailer of lumber in the world. The company has also promised to sell a small line of products that carry environmental certification. According to the Certified Forest Products Council, to carry the "certified" label, a supplier's wood must be tracked from the forest, through manufacturing and distribution, to the customer and must ensure a balance of social, economic and environmental factors. With the announcement, Home Depot joins a list of 27 other U.S. corporations - including IBM, Dell, Kinko's, Nike, 3M, Levi-Strauss, Mitsubishi Motors America, Mitsubishi Electric America, and others - who in 1998 announced their commitment to stop selling or using old growth wood. Information: Rain Forest Action Network: Michael Brune,; WWW: Home Depot: Jerry Shields, Sr. Public Relations Manager, The Home Depot, Email:

Field Station Profile
Springfield Field Station

The Springfield Field Station is the ecological research facility of the Archbold Tropical Research Center. Established in 1989, the Station is available year-round for research, public service, extension and teaching. Universities can schedule study-abroad courses for both graduate and undergraduate students at their convenience.

Located 370 m above the Caribbean in the rugged Antrim Valley the Springfield Field Station receives over 3,000 mm of rain per year. Temperatures change little from season to season, with daily highs averaging in the mid to upper 20's (0 C). The temperature is a few degrees cooler in December - February. The Field Station is a former plantation and contains a mix of second-growth rain forest, agroforestry plots and tropical agriculture. There are numerous streams on the property. The station is in a steep valley and some sections of the property are quite mountainous. Most of the species of birds commonly found in the Dominican rain forest can be observed within the station's boundaries. The Field Station is bordered on the south by the Morne Trois Pitons National Park (6,872 ha) and visitors to the Field Station can easily hike into the park from the property to see virgin tropical rain forest. Access to tropical dry forest at Cabrits National Park is by car. Marine sites are also accessible by car, including coral reefs and underwater steam vents.

Facilities include six major buildings on the property and numerous smaller storage buildings. The main building is the former Springfield Guest House and it contains the cafeteria, a lounge, computer facilities, a small library, classrooms and several guest rooms. The Apartment Building has one and two bedroom-furnished apartments with kitchens plus graduate student housing. Three cottages are used as dormitory style housing (The Stream House, The Bee House and Mt. Joy). Mt. Joy also has a wet lab, as does the Garage Building. Equipment available includes computers, a GIS system, microscopes, pH and oxygen meters, plus other miscellaneous field equipment. The Station also has a reference herbarium.

A consortium of universities and agencies that have first access to facilities runs the Station; however, over 50% of the use of the facility is by non-consortium universities. The Station is open year-round for study-abroad courses. Use by undergraduate students is especially encouraged. Interested parties should contact the director several months in advance to reserve one of the dormitories. Students pay tuition to their home institutions; the only charges paid the station are for room and board. The Station is also available for organized groups of nature tourists.

Research in progress at the Station includes work on tropical agriculture, agroforestry, and secondary forest management; GIS-related research on development, deforestation, and nature-based tourism; parasitology; as well as numerous student and class projects on bird populations, vegetation structure, bat communities, plant systematics and populations of lizard and amphibians. Information: Mr. Phillip Alexander Springfield Field Station P.O. Box 456 Roseau, Dominica West Indies (809) 449-1201 or Dr. Thomas E. Lacher, Jr. Archbold Tropical Research Center Clemson University, Clemson, SC 29634-1019; Tel: (803) 656-0457.

Meetings and Events
Items marked (*) are new this issue


Greater Caribbean Civil Society Forum. Quintana Roo, Mexico, 7-9 October 1999. The Forum is an interlocutor association between civil society, government and intergovernmental organizations concerned with issues of regional, sub-regional and hemispheric integration. Among others, working committees include ones on Sustainable Development; Environment; Education, Science and Technology; and Information and Communication for Integration. The Coordinating Committee for this meeting include the Caribbean Policy Development Centre, the Regional Coordination for Economic and Social Research, the Civil Initiative for Central American Integration, the Institute for Political Studies and International Relations, the Venezuelan Institute for Social and Political Studies, the Pontificia Universidad Javeriana, and Mexican Mutual Support Forum (the host organization in Mexico). Information: Technical Secretariat at the Economic Research Centre for the Caribbean. Tel: (809) 686-8696 or (809) 685-1266. Fax: (809) 686-8687. Email: or


*MEDECOS 2000: Past, Present, and Future. Stellenbosch, South Africa. 11-15 September. The International Society of Mediterranean Ecologists will be holding its Ninth International Conference on Mediterranean-type Ecosystems. WWW:

*Association for Tropical Biology. Indiana University, Bloomington, Indiana. 23-27 June 2000. The ATB will be meeting jointly with the Society for Systematic Biology/Society for the Study of Evolution/Society of American Naturalists. Information: Dr. Keith Clay. Program Chair. Email:

*3rd International Symposium Workshop on Frugivores and Seed Dispersal. 6-11 August 2000, Hotel Fazenda Fonte Colina Verde, Sao Pedro, Sao Paulo, Brazil. Contact: Dr Wesley Silva or Dr Mauro Galetti, Email: WWW:


Resident Faculty, Environmental Science and Policy in Latin America, Undergraduate Semester Abroad Program, Organization for Tropical Studies (OTS) and Duke University Office of Study Abroad.

Requirements: Ph.D. in Environmental Policy, Environmental Science, or Related Field; experience in environmental policy and management issues in Latin America, preferably in Central America, including Costa Rica; strong interest in teaching undergraduates in a field setting using an interdisciplinary approach; willingness to reside with students at field stations in Costa Rica; bilingual, or English speaker with strong Spanish language skills. Duties include collaborating in the design and implementation of a semester-long, general field course in Environmental Science and Policy in Costa Rica. This course is part of the 4-course Duke/OTS Undergraduate Semester Abroad Program (USAP). In addition, the candidate will work closely with other USAP faculty in order to integrate Environmental Science and Policy themes into other program courses, including Fundamentals of Tropical Ecology, Field Research in Tropical Biology, and Spanish Language and Culture. Competitive salary and benefits. Closing date: 1 October 1999. Position available 1 January 2000. Send cover letter, cv, and names and emails of four references to: Academic Director, OTS, Box 90633, Durham, NC, 27708. Equal Opportunity Employer.

Program Manager, Conservation Agriculture Program, Rainforest Alliance. The Rainforest Alliance's Conservation Agriculture Program (CAP) seeks an energetic, entrepreneurial Program Manager to provide leadership for operations, finance, marketing, and strategic business management of the program. S/he reports to the CAP Program Director based in Costa Rica, and supervises staff members in New York and Guatemala. The Program Manager is based in the Rainforest Alliance's NYC office. Qualifications: Applicants will have at least 5-10 years of work experience, preferably with strong international experience. S/he will have strong financial and management skills and entrepreneurial experience in new product/services development and marketing strategy development. Excellent interpersonal skills and sensitivity to an advisory role in dealing with partner organizations is necessary. MBA preferred, with a Bachelor's degree in any of the following: natural or biological sciences, conservation biology, resource management, or related field. Spanish proficiency and Portuguese and/or German a plus. Must be able to travel within the U.S. and abroad 10-15% of time. To apply: Send resume and cover letter with salary history to Personnel, Rainforest Alliance, 65 Bleecker St., NY, NY 10012. Fax: (212) 677-2187.

Executive Director, The Amazonian Center for Sustainable Forest Enterprise. The Forest Management Trust seeks an Executive Director for the Amazonian Center for Sustainable Forest Enterprise based in Bolivia. The Executive Director will be responsible for creating and building this private non-profit organization dedicated to promoting sustainable forest management in Bolivia and elsewhere in the Amazon Basin. The Center operations will be financed through a combination of fees for services and multi-donor funding. The Trust has received a seed grant to launch the Center. The Center will build on six years of remarkable accomplishments by the USAID-funded Bolivia Sustainable Forestry Project (BOLFOR). This project expects to see a million hectares of forest under good management as defined by Forest Stewardship Council certification Principles and Criteria by the end of 1999. Industrial and community enterprises are marketing certified products in Europe and North America.

The applicant for Executive Director must be entrepreneurial, with a broad knowledge of European and North American forest product markets as well as familiarity with the technologies and business strategies needed to access those markets. We seek an organization builder, capable of dealing effectively with a wide array of people - including business executives, community and NGO leaders, financiers and donor program officers. The applicant must have successful international experience in forestry-related business. The applicant must be fluent in English and Spanish, willing to reside in the city of Santa Cruz, Bolivia and travel extensively, both within the region and to Europe and North America. Salary will be commensurate with experience and benefits competitive. Please send an expression of interest and curriculum vitae via e-mail, fax or mail to: Joshua Dickinson - Executive Director The Forest Management Trust 6124 SW 30th Avenue Gainesville, Florida 32608 Fax: (352) 331-3284. Email:

Nicaragua Environmental Coordinator. The Nicaragua Network, a U.S. organization that has worked for twenty years in solidarity with the people of Nicaragua, is hiring a Nicaragua-based staff person. A major part of the job will be developing a relationship with Nicaraguan environmental organizations. Another important duty will be compiling the Nicaragua News Service and sending it to the Washington office on a weekly basis. Duties will include: Set up and maintain a Nicaragua Network office in Nicaragua; make contacts and maintain relations with Nicaraguan non-governmental organizations (NGOs), particularly environmental NGO's; gather information and explore feasibility of potential environmental campaigns; maintain contact with union organizers, human rights workers, and representatives of women's organizations and other popular movements on behalf of the Nicaragua Network. Requirements include: fluency in written and spoken Spanish and English; excellent organizational skills, resourcefulness, tranquility, creative problem solving, high levels of determination and self-motivation; commitment to social and environmental justice as demonstrated by past experience; prior Nicaragua experience, including involvement with solidarity work in Nicaragua; prior U.S. experience, preferably with a Third World solidarity movement; knowledge of the U.S. movement in solidarity with Nicaragua; prior environmental training or experience; computer literacy with IBM compatible equipment; willingness to travel using Nicaraguan public transportation system; willingness to interact with all classes and races of people; willingness to do occasional public speaking in the US; willingness and aptitude for inter-personal relations, budgeting, investigating environmental issues, writing articles and press releases. Minimum commitment of one year is required. Salary: $800 per month, plus operating expenses, health coverage, 4 weeks vacation. Postmark deadline for applications: 30 September 1999. Send cover letter, resume and names, phon numbers, and addresses of three references to Katherine Hoyt, Nicaragua Network, 1247 "E" St. SE, Washington, DC 20003, or by e-mail to Information: (202) 544-9355.

Graduate Programs

Tropical Biology at Florida International University (FIU). The Department of Biological Sciences at FIU offers M.S. and Ph.D. degrees with emphasis areas that include tropical and subtropical ecology, wetland ecology, restoration ecology, plant systematics and ethnobotany. The Department has a formal agreement with Fairchild Tropical Garden and close ties with the Department of Environmental Studies, Biological Resource Division of USGS (based at FIU), and the Southeastern Environmental Research Center (based at FIU). This network of scientists represents one of the largest concentrations of tropical biologists in the United States. The Department has recently received state funds to enhance Tropical Biology that have been used to support graduate research and travel, support tropical postdoctoral fellows, expand the greenhouse facility, and hire a plant systematist. Information: Tropical Biology Program, Department of Biological Sciences, Florida International University, Miami, FL 33199.

Graduate and Undergraduate Research Opportunities

Tropical Forestry Research. Opportunities are available for M.Sc. students interested in tropical forestry research, through Dr. John Weber and colleagues at ICRAF, Peru. Available projects are: 1) Variation within and among provenances of Calycophyllum spruceanum and Guazuma crinita in the Peruvian Amazon Basin. These species are fast growing, native timber-trees in the Peruvian Amazon Basin. Farmers would like to establish more of these trees on their farms, but many farmers do not have access to high-quality seed. Dr. Weber has provenance and progeny trials underway and is looking for MSc. level students interested in studies related to these two tree species; 2) Variation among families of Bactris gasipaes in the Peruvian Amazon Basin. This native palm species yields two principal products - fruit and heart-of-palm. The starchy fruit was a staple food for Native Amerindians in the Amazon Basin. Farmers now cultivate the palm for both fruit and heart-of-palm. Dr. Weber is looking for a MSc. level student interested in undertaking progeny studies related to this tree species. The location of these research projects is Pucallpa, Peru. Students would need to provide funds for travel to Peru, food, accommodation and health insurance. Research costs will be covered by ICRAF. Information: Dr. John Weber, ICRAF,

Research Opportunities for Undergraduates in Tropical Lake Studies. The Nyanza Project is a summer research training program for undergraduates, sponsored by the International Decade of East African Lakes (IDEAL) and funded by the National Science Foundation and the Lake Tanganyika Biodiversity Project. This 6-week program is open to sophomore-senior level undergraduates of any nationality attending a U.S. College or university, or to students from the countries surrounding Lake Tanganyika, who are interested in continuing research careers in any aspect of aquatic sciences. Students who are members of under-represented minority groups are particularly encouraged to apply. The program will take place at Kigoma, Tanzania to take advantage of world class research opportunities at Lake Tanganyika. Students who are accepted into the program will have their airfare, room and board, and research expenses paid by the project and will be given a stipend. Applications for the 2000 program (3 July - 11 August) will be accepted until 15 December 1999. Information: The Nyanza Project, Department of Geosciences, University of Arizona. Tucson, AZ. 85721. Tel: (520) 626-7312. Fax: (520) 626-2672. Email: WWW:

Paramo Project In Ecuador. Support is available for two graduate students currently pursuing a Masters Degree in Human Ecology, Anthropology or Geography, who are interested in doing their thesis in cooperation with the ParÜmo Project (PP). This is a cooperative initiative of The Mountain Institute (USA)- EcoCiencia (Ecuador), and the Department of Geography/Landscape Sciences, University of Amsterdam (Netherlands). This specific activity is coordinated by The Mountain Institute (TMI). The objectives of the research are to complete a GIS-based, quantitative analysis of the demographic, social and economic characteristics of populations living in montane grassland ecosystems (parÜmo) of Ecuador, relating this analysis to the spatial variability of the ecosystem and to historical changes in land use. Specific research problems and objectives will be identified by the student researchers. The ParÜmo Project is a participatory applied project to develop community-based parÜmo land use plans and to influence national policies to promote sustainable use and conservation of this mountain ecosystem. PP is working in six areas of Ecuador in cooperation with local communities and local development organizations. Upward expansion of agriculture, uncontrolled use of fire for cattle herding and other unsustainable uses are characteristic of the region.

Support will be provided for 9 months (6 months for fieldwork and preliminary report writing, and 3 months to complete the thesis). Student must provide his/her own round trip to Ecuador and living expenses in Ecuador. The Project will provide general sponsorship and mentoring, including access to the communities, logistical support in the field, access to all research sites, and research advice; access to project information (e.g., GIS maps of parÜmo ecosystems of Ecuador, population databases of latest census at the level of household units, library of references, and excellent collection of parÜmo publications); involvement in a multidisciplinary team of anthropologists, ecologists, geographers, extensionists and farmers, all of whom have an abiding interest in the human and bio-ecology of these unique, high-altitude ecosystems. Requirements: Spanish language fluency or ability to learn quickly, ability to co-author a final report within the nine-month timeframe and ability to complete thesis on time. Information: Dr. Jorge Recharte, Director, Programa Andino, Instituto de Montaßa, Peru. Tel: (51-44) 723446 (Huaraz),(51-1)241-8563(Lima). Email: Please copy your message to: Jakob Gearheard, ParÜmo Project Officer, TMI. Email: General information on the Paramo Project: The Mountain Institute. WWW: Tel: USA (304) 358-2401.

Graduate and Post-Graduate Research Grants. The Biological Research Station of the Edmund Niles Huyck Preserve offers grants (max: $2,500) to support biological research which utilizes the resources of the preserve. Among the research areas supported are basic and applied ecology, animal behavior, systematics, evolution, and conservation. The 2000-acre preserve is located on the Helderberg plateau, 30 miles southwest of Albany. Habitats include northeast hardwood hemlock forests, conifer plantations, old fields, permanent and intermittent streams, 10- and 100-acre lakes and several waterfalls. Facilities include a wet and dry lab, library, and houses/cabins for researchers. Deadline: 1 February 2000. Application material may be obtained from Dr. Richard L. Wyman, Executive Director, EN Huyck Preserve and Biological Research Station, PO Box 189, Rensselaerville, NY 12147.

Conservation Grants Program, World Wildlife Fund. World Wildlife Fund is seeking proposals for a limited number of small conservation grants ($5k) that focus on critical questions for conservation planning and support conservation action for priority habitats, phenomena, and species. We encourage projects that address biodiversity conservation issues related to large-scale patterns of biodiversity, minimum requirements for the persistence of species and processes, the design of conservation landscapes across whole ecoregions, and problems of alien species on islands. We also urge submission of proposals that will catalyze conservation action in priority freshwater, marine, and non-forest habitats. We will emphasize projects that have a good potential to catalyze further conservation action for issues and areas. Proposals from regional conservationists are particularly encouraged. Each proposal must clearly state targeted biodiversity features and how it will make a significant difference towards their conservation. Project reports are expected after 6 months and one year. Submit a 1500 word or two page (maximum) proposal to David Olson, Conservation Science Program, World Wildlife Fund, 1250 24th St., NW, Washington, DC 20037-1175 USA, or send via e-mail: by the strict deadline of 1 November 1999.
James F. Lynch Conservation Biology Fund. In honor of the work of the late James F. Lynch, a conservation biologist, this fund supports new scientists working in conservation biology in Central America and East Africa. Information: James F. Conservation Biology Fund, c/o Jeanine Robert, Smithsonian Environmental Research Center, PO Box 28, Edgewater, MD 21037.

Publications and Resources

*Sciencelinks. A new mailing list called Sciencelinks is a service where scientists, news organizations, and individuals with an interest in science can get the latest information via website links on research, news and homepages pertaining to the scientific establishment. Sciencelinks is a collection of hyperlinks and URLs to allow you to keep up to date with all areas of scientific study. To subscribe visit: WWW:

World Resources Institute Publications:

World Resources 1998-99. 1998. Oxford University Press. 384 pp. ISBN: 0-19521-408-0. $24.95. The eighth biennial issue of the most authoritative report on global environment brings together in a highly readable format the latest ideas on a broad spectrum of natural resource issues and suggests strategies for addressing them. This edition focuses on the critical issue of environmental change and human health.

Sustainable Enterprise in Latin America: A Case Book. Eds: S. Ward, WRI and L. Pratt, INCAE. 1997. 200 pp. ISBN: 1-56973-183-7. $20.00. Available in Spanish only. This collection of case studies demonstrates the opportunities and challenges facing different organizations in Latin America trying to integrate sustainable development principles into daily practices. Developed by business school and university faculty in Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Costa Rica, Mexico, and other countries, cases cover various industries including paper and pulp, glass production, textiles, hydropower, and fertilizer, as well as community grass roots initiative.

Climate, Biodiversity, and Forests: Issues and Opportunities from Kyoto Protocol. P. Brown. 1998. 40pp. ISBN: 1-56973-285-x. $20.00. As policy makers prepare to implement the limits on greenhouse gas emissions called for in the 1997 Kyoto Protocol. This timely report considers the role of forests and land use in protection the earth's climate and biodiversity. Prepared in a collaboration between World Resources Institute and IUCN - the World Conservation Union, the report focuses on the ways in which forests and land-use change can both exacerbate and mitigate climate change and identifies the opportunities the Protocol presents for conservation, improved management, and restoration of forests.

Pesticides and the Immune System: The Public Health Risks. R. Repetto and S. Baliga. 1996. 100pp. ISBN: 1-56973-087-3. $20.00. Pesticides and the Immune System brings together for the first time an extensive body of experimental and epidemiological research from around the world documenting widely used pesticides' effects on the immune system and the attendant health risks. In so doing it documents that pesticide-related health risks are much more serious than generally known, especially in developing countries where exposure is widespread and infectious diseases take a heavy toll.

Toxics and Health: The Potential Long-Term Effects of Industrial Activity. C.S. Silver and D.S. Rothman. 1995. 75pp. ISBN 1-56973-027-x. $20.00. Toxics and Health summarizes the views and information exchanged during a three-day workshop for multidisciplinary experts from the United States, the Czech Republic, Poland, Russia, and Brazil. Recognizing industry's key role in economic development, participants grappled with what to do about the toxic byproducts of vital industrial activity. This report presents evidence that deliberate steps are needed to keep hazardous materials out of the environment.

Carbon Counts: Estimating Climate Change Mitigation in Forestry Projects. P. Brown, B. Cabarle, and R. Livernash. 1997. 32pp. ISBN 1-56973-299-9. $14.95. Considers the use of forests for carbon sequestration as a response to global warming. The authors look at ways of improving the reliability of net carbon savings estimates by anticipating and avoiding leakage, or unexpected carbon losses.

To order WRI publications: WRI Publications, P.O. Box 4852. Hampden Station, Baltimore, MD 21211. Tel: (800) 822-0504. Fax: (410) 516-6998. Email:

The Ecotravellers' Wildlife Guides. Provides tourists and naturalists with invaluable and authoritative information about the natural history, ecology and wildlife habitats of various regions of the world. Series consists of guides of Costa Rica, Belize and Northern Guatemala, Tropical Mexico, Ecuador, and Hawaii. $27.95 per guide. WWW:

La Diversidad Biologica de Iberoam«rica II. G. Halffter (Ed). 1998. Instituto de Ecologia, A.C. 337pp. Spanish only. The papers included in this work range from conceptual issues to essays about the biota of a country or region. Reviews on some taxa from Cuba, Mexico and the Dominican Republic are included. Tel: (28) 42 18 00. Fax: (28) 18 78 09. Email:

The Canopy Citations Database is now available through the World Wide Web. This database contains over 1300 citations regarding canopy ecology. Search for authors, titles, dates, journals, keywords, or words within an abstract. WWW:

Benefits of Biodiversity. The Council for Agricultural Science and Technology, an international consortium of 36 scientific and professional societies, has released a major policy report on biological diversity entitled "Benefits of Biodiversity." The report details recommendations on the importance of conservation of biodiversity and its links to maintaining agricultural productivity. Orders: CAST, 4430 West Lincoln Way, Ames, Iowa. Or download at

Species Diversity and Richness II. This is a program to aid ecologists and environmentalists in the calculation and application of diversity indices and estimating total species richness for a habitat. The program is available for Windows 95/98. The new release includes: diversity measures; beta diversity; data simulation from a variety of models; distribution fitting (geometric, log series, truncated log normal and broken stick); and between-sample comparisons of diversity using randomization tests. Information: WWW:

Ecological Society of America. The 1999 issues of Ecology, Ecological Monographs, Ecological Applications, and the Bulletin are available online as a demonstration for ESA members and the public. The online demonstration will remain open and free for the remainder of 1999.
Amphibian Disease Website. This website is devoted to amphibian disease associated with population declines. WWW: