TROPINET, Vol. 7, No. 2, June 1996

Association for Tropical Biology on the World Wide Web. The ATB homepage is up and running, thanks to Steve Mulkey at the University of Missouri-St. Louis. It can be found at ATB members may want to check their listings in the Membership Directory posted on the homepage.


Impending Pollination Crisis Threatens Biodiversity and Agriculture,
by Mrill Ingram, Gary Paul Nabhan and Stephen Buchmann, The Forgotten Pollinators Campaign, Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum, 2021 N. Kinney Rd. Tucson, AZ 85743. Email:

For one out of every three bites you take, thank a bee, butterfly, bat, bird, or other pollinator. Animals provide pollination services for over three-quarters of the staple crop plants that feed humankind, and for 90% of all flowering plants in the world.

We are facing an "impending pollination crisis," in which both wild and managed pollinators are disappearing at alarming rates due to habitat loss, pesticide poisoning, diseases and pests (USDA-ARS 1991). Pollinator declines may destabilize food production and ecosystem functions globally. This concern has led to the formation of an international working group on pollination to advise the Sustainable Rural Environment and Energy Network of the United Nations' Food and Agriculture Organization. Pollination is a basic service upon which we all depend, one provided by healthy ecosystems that provide pollinators with habitats for foraging, nesting, roosting, and mating. Pollination is critical to successful commercial orchard and field crop production, endangered species protection, urban gardening, ecological restoration, and forage production. As food producers and consumers, scientists and educators, beekeepers and wildlife enthusiasts, we are concerned that a basic fact of life--our dependence upon the functional relationship between plants and pollinators--is being ignored.

Pollinators in agriculture. About 1 billion people--one fifth of the world's human population--are now undernourished because of chronic instabilities in food production and distribution. Recent surveys document that more than 30 genera of animals -- consisting of hundreds of species of floral visitors -- are required to pollinate the 100 or so crops that feed the world (Prescott-Allen and Prescott-Allen 1990, Buchmann and Nabhan 1996a). Only 15% of these crops are serviced by domestic honey bees, while at least 80% are pollinated by wild bees and other wildlife.

Honey bees, economically the most important pollinators of crops worldwide, are in decline. The number of commercial U.S. bee colonies plummeted from 5.9 million colonies in the late 1940s, to 4.3 million in 1985, and to 2.7 million in 1995 (USDA-ARS 1991). The loss of one quarter of all managed honey bee colonies since 1990 signals one of the most severe declines in any agricultural input that U.S. agriculture has ever experienced. This demise has been brought on by the spread of diseases and parasitic mites, the invasion of Africanized honeybees, poisoning by pesticide exposure, climatic fluctuations, and the abandonment of government subsidies for beekeepers (USDA-ARS 1991). This unfortunate trend continues, despite the economic value of honeybees to agriculture (Southwick and Southwick 1992).

Alternative pollinators often play important economic roles. The ground-nesting alkali bee, for example, is native to North America, and is a more effective pollinator of alfalfa than is the honey bee (O'Toole 1993). In the southeastern U.S., highbush blueberry farmers depend on wild bees for pollination services. A diversity of wild pollinators are important in tropical agricultural crops (Roubik 1995). Complete inventories of the effective pollinators of cultivated crops and other valuable plants are urgently needed. We also need inventories of nectar resources and host plants that sustain wild pollinators. Entomologists need to research how populations of native insects can be managed for pollinating crops and considered as genetic resources essential for sustaining agricultural yields. It is imperative that we conserve the wild pollinators that can, if properly managed, stabilize and even enhance crop yields.

Pollinators and biodiversity. Our recent analyses of global inventories of biodiversity indicate that more than 100,000 different animal species -- and perhaps as many as 200,000 -- play roles in pollinating the 250,000 kinds of wild flowering plants on this planet. In addition to countless bees, wasps, moths, butterflies, flies, beetles, and other invertebrates, perhaps 1500 species of vertebrates serve as pollinators. Hummingbirds are the best known vertebrate pollinators in the Americas, but perching birds, flying foxes, fruit bats, possums, lemurs, rodents, and even a gecko function as effective pollinators elsewhere in the world.

The ultimate reproductive consequences of pollinator scarcity on wild plants is not appreciated and remains understudied (Burd 1994, Nabhan and Fleming 1993). The few existing studies indicate that many species of wild plants may be suffering decreased reproductive success as a result of low visitation rates by pollinators. The last remaining natural populations of a rare evening primrose live in California's Antioch Dunes National Wildlife Refuge. Though the primrose is protected, its hawkmoth pollinator has not reappeared after years of pesticide spraying in nearby vineyards, and primrose reproduction has remained low (Pavlik et al. 1993). In Iowa, where only 200 acres of unplowed prairie remain intact, low seed yields in prairie wildflowers has been linked to lack of adequate visitation rates by pollinators (Hendrix 1994). Rare cacti in U.S. national parks and adjacent to heavily sprayed cotton fields showed high levels of floral abortion due to paucity of pollinating moths (Suzan, Nabhan, and Patten 1994). In urban Tokyo, a primrose almost completely failed to set seed due to local disturbance of its bumblebee pollinator (Washitani et al. 1994). In a 17-year study in French Guiana, a shift in native pollinator populations to a fauna dominated by Africanized bees caused a 40% drop in seed set of tropical legumes (Roubik 1996).

Unfortunately, regular assessment of status of pollinators is not usually part of management plans for threatened species. In the U.S., even the pollinators of plants on the federal endangered species plants are not regularly monitored. Our survey of federal recovery plans for 16 endangered plants growing near the U.S./Mexico border revealed that the range of available pollinators had been determined for only two of them, but the population status of the pollinators themselves had not been analyzed for any species. The assessment of pollinator status needs to be elevated to a priority for agencies and organizations managing lands where endangered plants occur. Data bases on endangered plant species need to routinely include fields for pollinators to elicit and accommodate new information.

Threats to wild pollinators. Globally, over 180 species of birds and mammals in 100 genera of vertebrate pollinators are already listed as endangered, and untold invertebrates are at risk as well (Nabhan 1996). Because some wild pollinators need undisturbed habitat for nesting, roosting and foraging, they are very susceptible to habitat degradation and fragmentation (Nabhan and Buchmann 1996a). In Costa Rica wild bee diversity in degraded forest land dropped from 70 to 37 species in 14 years (Buchmann & Nabhan 1996). While the exact mechanism responsible for population declines is uncertain, one strong possibility is that habitat fragments do not provide the diversity of resources needed by pollinators. For example, they may require plants that flower sequentially, providing food sources throughout the season, or may require alternative nectar and pollen sources. Lepidopteran pollinators require host plants for their larvae, and bees require nesting resources. Elimination of these resources can lead to declines in pollinator populations (Buchmann and Nabhan 1996).

Another threat to wild pollinators is exposure to pesticides and other toxins than can poison them or impair their reproduction. For example, aerial spraying for coniferous forest pests in Canada in the mid-1970's reduced populations of native bees to the extent that blueberry yields were reduced for a period of four years (Kevan and Plowright 1995). Field studies in the deserts of the southwest U.S. have found that pollinators remaining in small fragments of natural habitat are particularly susceptible to pesticide spraying on adjacent croplands (Suzan, Nabhan and Patten 1994; Goodstein 1996). Herbicides can eliminate nectar sources for pollinators, larval host plants for moths and butterflies, and deplete nesting materials for bees (Nabhan and Buchmann 1996b).

Certain pollinators, such as bats, hummingbirds, moths and butterflies migrate seasonally over long and short distances between mountain ranges, regions, or countries. Their migratory routes are often well-defined nectar corridors where the sequence of flowering over a season offers the pollinators sufficient energy to sustain their journey. Many of these nectar corridors are no longer fully intact, however; land conversion has eliminated some floral resources over 20 to 60 mile segments, in some cases longer than what energy-depleted pollinators can fly in one day (Nabhan and Fleming 1993).

Pollinators as ecosystem links. Pollination is a threatened ecological service. The interactions between plants and their pollinators are essential to viable structure and healthy functioning of wild and agricultural communities. Habitat loss, disease, and pesticides take their toll in different ways, but all of them imperil these vital ecological relationships, many of which are products of thousands of years of natural and cultural selection. In an era when human activities place increasing pressure on both natural and rural landscapes, we cannot ignore the vital role of pollination services and the frequently negative impacts that we are having on plant/pollinator relationships. As a society, we need to recognize our debt to the "forgotten pollinators".

Buchmann, S. L. and G. P. Nabhan. 1996. The Forgotten Pollinators. Island Press, Washington, D.C.

Burd, M. 1994. Botanical Review 60:81-109. Goodstein, C. 1996. Amicus Journal, Spring: 26-30.

Hendrix, S. D. 1994. North American Prairie Conference Proceedings 13: 115-119.

Kevan, P. G. 1975. Environmental Conservation, 2(4): 293-298.

Nabhan, G. 1996 (ed.) The Pollinator Redbook of Threatened Vertebrate Species. in press, Forgotten Pollinators Campaign, Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum, Tucson AZ.

Nabhan, G. P. and S. L. Buchmann. 1996 (in press). Pollination services: biodiversity's direct link to world food stability. In Ecosystem Services, G. Daly, ed. Island Press, Washington, D.C.
Nabhan, G. P. and S. L. Buchmann. 1996b (in press). Comments in Toxicology.

Nabhan, G. P. and T. Fleming. 1993. Conservation Biology 7(3): 457-459.

O'Toole, C. 1993. Diversity of Native Bees and Agroecosystems. In Hymenoptera and Biodiversity. CAB International, Wallingford, U.K.

Pavlik, B. M., N. Ferguson, and M. Nelson. 1993. Biological Conservation, 65: 267-278.

Prescott-Allen, R. and C. Prescott-Allen. 1990. Conservation Biology, 4(4): 365-374.

Roubik, D. R. 1995. Agricultural Services Bulletin 118, FAO, Rome Southwick, E. E. and L.

Southwick, Jr. 1992. Economic Entomology. 85(3): 621-633.

Suzan, H., G. P. Nabhan, and D. T. Patten. 1994. Conservation Biology, 8:461-470. USDA-ARS. 1991.

Pollination Workshop Proceedings. Unpublished, Denver, CO.

Washitani, I. R. Osawa, H. Namai, and M. Niwa. 1994. Journal of Ecology 82:571-579.


Forests at the Limit: Environmental Constraints on Forest Function
. Forestry in South Africa is based on savanna woodland, native closed canopy forest, and commercial plantations. Forestry currently plays a critical role in the accelerated development of rural South Africa by providing affordable energy and building materials to rural households, by contributing to sustainable agriculture, and by providing raw materials to a wide range of small businesses. Forest researchers in South Africa face huge new challenges, and an improved understanding of tree physiology and canopy processes is required to maximize sustainable productivity and to minimize environmental impacts of plantations. A workshop on this topic will be held by the International Union of Forest Research Organizations (IUFRO), 11-17 May, 1997, at Skukuza, Kruger National Park. The workshop will include presentations on forest water use; carbon, nutrient-plant-water interactions; tropical forests, woodlands and savannas; and forest responses to stress. Information: Vanessa Daniel, IUFRO Workshop Secretariat, PO Box 95823, Waterkloof 0145, South Africa. Tel: 2112346 1517. FAX: 27 12467909. Email:


Newsletter on Invertebrate Studies
. Cocuyo is a newsletter about the activities of scientists who study the invertebrates of Cuba. It is produced by editors Julio Genaro and Jorge L. Fontenla of the Museo Nacional de Historia Natural (MNHN) in Havana and published and mailed with support from the RARE Center for Tropical Conservation in Philadelphia. The editors are interested in contributions from those who study Cuban invertebrate fauna. The newsletter is also available for exchange from the MNHN. To contribute, to participate in an exchange, or for more information: Julio A. Genaro, Museo Nacional de Historia Natural, Obispo #61, Esquina a Oficios, Habana Vieja 10100 Cuba. FAX: 537 62-0353.

III Brazilian Ecological Congress. The Congress will be held 6-11 October 1996 in Brasilia. Information is available at the University of Brasilia's World Wide Web site:


The 1996 meeting of the Association for Tropical Biology
will be held in conjunction with the Ecological Society of America, the Society for Conservation Biology, Smithsonian Institution/Man and the Biosphere, and the American Society of Naturalists at the Rhode Island Convention Center, Providence, Rhode Island, 11-15 August 1996. The meeting will include symposia, contributed poster and paper sessions, workshops, field trips, social events, and business meetings. Information: ATB Program Chair, Dr. Colin Orians, Department of Biology, Tufts University, Medford, MA 02155. Tel: 617- 627-3543; FAX: 617-627-3805; Email: OR ESA Program Chair, Dr. Jill Baron, National Biological Service, Natural Resources Ecology Laboratory, Colorado State University, Fort Collins CO 80523; Email: Registration information and materials are available on the ESA homepage:

In remembrance and recognition of the contributions of a singular scientist, colleague, mentor, and friend, ATB has established the Alwyn Gentry Award for Best Student Paper presented at the annual meeting of the ATB. Students who would like their posters and oral presentations considered for an award should send their abstract to Julie S. Denslow, Executive Director, ATB, Department of Plant Biology, Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, LA 70803 USA (Email: Students should be the first author on the paper and should be reporting substantially their own work.

Biodiversity Bulletin. The U.S. based Biodiversity Action Network (BIONET), the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN), and the World Resources Institute (WRI) will jointly produce a quarterly newsletter entitled Biodiversity Bulletin. The newsletter will act as a global communications tool to inform key constituencies and actively promote the conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity. The inaugural issue will be produced in English, Spanish and French and will be posted on the Internet. Information: Biodiversity Action Network, Tel: (202) 547-8902. FAX: (202) 265-0222. Email:

Intelligence Satellite Photos Released. More than 300,000 satellite photographs collected by the U.S. intelligence community between 1960 and 1972 are now available from the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS). This collection adds more than a decade of records to the Landsat collection that has been available for civilian sue since 1972. These images, which include much of the world, allow comparison with recent images to reveal changes in natural systems and land cover. The World Wide Web catalog for USGS images is: Technical information: USGS, EROS Data Center, Customer Services, Sioux Falls, SD 57198. Tel: (605) 594-6151. FAX: (605) 594-6589. Email:

Field Station Profile: Yasuni Scientific Research Station. The Ecuadorian Amazon possesses an enormous and unique biological wealth of prominent interest to the world's scientific community. This tropical rainforest has the highest known biodiversity in the world. Nevertheless, this region remains one of the least known and much of it is yet to be discovered. Of the many new species of birds, plants and other animals, a great number are endemic to the region. The interactions among organisms and the use indigenous people make of plants and animals for medicine, food, and construction are just beginning to be understood by the outside world. The cultural richness of the Huaorani and Quichua people living in the area is an invaluable resource.

The Yasuni Scientific Research Station was created on August 25, 1995 by the Ecuadorian government through the Institute of Forestry, Natural Areas and Wildlife (INEFAN), and its administration assigned to the Department of Biological Sciences of the Pontifical Catholic University of Ecuador. The opportunities offered by the station are unique; the station has a privileged location in the heart of the Ecuadorian rainforest, Yasuni National Park. The park was declared a Reserve of the Biosphere by UNESCO in 1989.

The Yasuni Scientific Research Station is located in the Ecuadorian Amazonia, southeast of Coca, province of Napo, on the south shore of the Tiputini river and close to the confluence with the Tivacuno river. Information: Alberto Padilla, Director, Department of Biological Sciences, Pontifica Universidad CatÛlica del Ecuador. FAX: 593-2-567-117. Email:

Tropical Biology and Conservation on the World Wide Web

Biodiversity Action Network: http ://

Center for International Environmental Law:

Conservation International:

Convention on Biological Diversity:

Convention on Climate Change:

Costa Rica: http :// INBio:

Inter American Development Bank:

International Institute for Sustainable Development:

Latin American Database:

Organization of American States:


ANNOUNCEMENTS Meetings and Events Items marked * are new this issue 1996

8th International Coral Reef Symposium
. Panama City, Panama, 24-29 June. Information: Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute, STRI Unit 0948, APO AA 34002-0948, USA. Email:

*47th Annual Meeting of the American Institute for Biological Sciences: Temperate Rainforests. Seattle, Washington, 4-8 August. Information: AIBS Headquarters, 1444 Eye Street, Suite 200, Washington, DC 20005. Tel: (202) 628-1500. FAX: (202) 628-1509. Email:

Ecology and Problem Solving. Providence, Rhode Island, USA, 11-15 August. Annual Meeting of the Ecological Society of America. Information: Dr. Jill Baron, Program Chair, Natural Resource Ecology Laboratory, Colorado State University, Fort Collins CO 80523. Tel: 303-491-1968; Email:

*Sixth International Bee Research Association Conference on Tropical Bees: Management and Diversity. 12-17 August, Heredia, Costa Rica. Information: Richard Jones, Director, IBRA,

World Heritage Tropical Forests: Science for Better Conservation Management. Cairns, North Queensland, Australia, 2-7 September. Information: Conference Secretariat: Tel: (07) 369 0477, FAX: (07) 369 1512.

5th Intecol International Wetlands Conference
. Perth, Australia, 22-28 September. Information: Dr. Jenny Davis, School of Biological and Environmental Sciences, Murdoch University, Murdoch, Western Australia 6150. Tel: 61 9 360 2939; Email:

*Big-Leaf Mahogany: Ecology and Management. San Juan, Puerto Rico, 22-24 October. Information: Julio C. Figueroa Colon, International Institute of Tropical Forestry, PO Box 25000, San Juan, Puerto Rico 00928-5000. Tel: (809) 766-5335. FAX: (809) 766-6302. Email: /s=j.figueroa/

III Latin American Congress of Ecology. MÈrida, Venezuela, 22-28 October. Information: Dr. Jaime E. PÈfaur, Secretario Ejecutivo, III Congreso Latinoamericano de EcologÌa, Facultad de Ciencias, Universidad de los Andes, MÈrida, Venezuela 5101.

*Tree Improvement For Sustainable Tropical Forestry. Catoundra, Queenstand, Australia, 27 October-November. Information: Conference Secretariat, 1996 QFRI -IUFRO Conference, Queensland Forest Research Institute, M.S. 483, Gympie, QLD 4570, Australia. Tel: 61 74 822244. FAX: 61 74 828755. Email:

Pan-African Ornithological Congress. Accra, Ghana, 1-8 December. Dr. Yaa Ntiamoa-Baidu, Ghana Wildlife Society, PO Box 13252, Accra, Ghana.

Biodiversity, Conservation and Management Symposium. Beni Biosphere Reserve, La Paz, Bolivia, 3-6 December. Information: Francisco Dallmeier, Smithsonian/MAB Biodiversity Program, 1100 Jefferson Drive, SW Suite 3123, Washington DC 20560, USA. Tel: (202) 357-4793 FAX: (202) 786-2557. Email: Or Carmen Miranda, Academia Nacional de Ciencias de Bolivia, Av. 16 de Julio 1732, Casilla 5829, La Paz, Bolivia. Tel or FAX: (581-2) 350612. Email:

Natural Science Collections: A Resource for the Future. Durham, England. 19-21 December. 2nd International Symposium and Work Congress on the Preservation of Natural History Collections. Information: Chris Collins, Natural Science Congress 96, Geological Conservation Unit, Dept. of Earth Sciences, Downing St., Cambridge CB2 3EQ, UK


The School for Field Studies: Resident faculty positions
. SFS seeks educators experienced in field based education to work in various locations worldwide; all positions are residential. Qualifications include PhD or Masters with 4 years of applied relevant experience, 2 years teaching at the college level, experience in the region (either Australia or Costa Rica), and an ability to live in a remote field setting.

Field Director positions. SFS seeks an unique blend of academic knowledge, entrepreneurial spirit and proven management skills to lead a faculty team and up to 32 college students in a field based applied program. The Field Director has overall academic and administrative responsibility for the program. Locations include Australia and Costa Rica. Requirements: PhD. or Masters degree with 7 years of applied experience; management experience with staff, the creation of educational programs and budgets; experience teaching at the college level; familiarity with the region; and the ability to lead and motivate staff in a remote setting. To apply: send detailed letter and cv to The School for Field Studies, Box T, 16 Broadway, Beverly, MA, 01915, USA.


Call for Proposals
. The Biological Dynamics of Forest Fragments Project (BDFFP) of the Instituto Nacional de Pesquisas do Amazonia (INPA) and the Smithsonian Institution are issuing a call for research proposals. Based at 11 forest fragments near Manaus, Brazil, the BDFF program began in 1979 with a focus on the effects of fragmentation on recently continuous tropical rainforest habitat. Proposals should address questions relating to the biology of extinction, forest edge effects, the processes of forest regeneration, fragmentation effects on the genetic structure of tropical species, taxonomic studies of poorly- known or highly diverse taxa, or basic tropical ecology which can serve as the basis for future investigations of fragmentation effects. Information: Dr. Claude Gascon, Scientific Coordinator, PDBFF, INPA Ecologia, C.P. 478, 6901 1-970 Manaus AM, Brasil. Tel: 55 92 6421 148. FAX: 55 92 6422050.

Earthwatch. The Center for Field Research invites proposals for 1997 field grants awarded by its affiliate Earthwatch, an international, non-profit organization dedicated to sponsoring research and promoting public education in the sciences and humanities. Information about Earthwatch field grants is available on the Center's World Wide Web site

The Wenner-Gren Foundation for Anthropological Research. The Foundation funds various programs in support of research in all branches of anthropology, including cultural/social anthropology, ethnology, biological/physical anthropology, archeology, and anthropological linguistics, and in closely related disciplines concerned with human origins. Funding opportunities include regular and predoctoral grants, postdoctoral fellowships, developing countries training fellowships, international collaborative research grants, and funding for conferences and historical archive preparation. Information: Wenner-Gren Foundation, 220 Fifth Avenue, 16th Floor, New York, NY 10001. Tel: (212) 683-5000.

Tropical Research Awards. The Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute and the Organization for Tropical Studies announce five research awards. Applications are invited from established investigators in all fields of ecological and evolutionary biology to conduct comparative research between STRI and OTS field sites in Panama and Costa Rica. Awards include summer salary for up to three years and appropriate travel funds. Successful applicants are expected to apply other resources to support research. Open to all nationalities. Applications accepted until. Address inquiries to Education Office, Smithsonian, Apdo 2072, Balboa, Ancon, Panama or Unit 0948, APO AA, 34002-0948, USA (Email: STRI.TIVOLI.DEALBAG@IC.SI.EDU).

Mellon Research Exploration Awards in Tropical Biology. The Organization for Tropical Studies (OTS) and the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute (STRI) invite proposals for comparative research at their research stations in Costa Rica and Panama. Awards (to $2000) supported by the Andrew Mellon Foundation will allow researchers with previous or ongoing projects at either OTS' La Selva field station or STRI's Barro Colorado Island (and nearby sites) to develop comparative studies at both sites. Applications reviewed every six months beginning 31 October 1995. Interested researchers should talk to Bruce Young or contact Mellon Comparative Research Grants, La Selva Biological Station, Interlink 341, PO Box 02-5635, Miami, FL, 33152; Fax: (506) 710-1414; Email: LASELVA@NS.OTS.AC.CR.


Tropical Forest Plant Ecophysiology
, edited by S. S. Mulkey, R. L. Chazdon, and A.P. Smith, Chapman and Hall, NY. 1996. $89.95. The book consists of 21 chapters covering many aspects of plant ecophysiology. It is organized into 4 sections: Resource acquisition, Ecophysiological aspects of species interactions, Ecophysiological patterns across tropical forest communities, and Ecophysiology of forest regeneration and succession. More info is available on the Chapman and Hall web page ( Chazdon, University of Connecticut.

A Field Guide to the Familes and Genera of Woody Plants of Northwest South America (Columbia, Ecuador, Peru) with Supplementary Notes on Herbaceous Taxa. Alwyn H. Gentry, 1996. University of Chicago Press. Information: Dave Aftandilian, Tel: (312) 702 -0279, FAX (312) 702-9756. Email: da@press.

Ecology, Conservation, and Management of Southeast Asian Rainforests. R.B. Primack and T.E. Lovejoy, Editors, 1995. Yale University Press, P.0. Box 209040, New Haven, CT 06520- 9040.

Neotropical Birds: Ecology and Conservation. D. F. Stotz, J.W. Fitzpatrick, T.A. Parker III, and D.K. Moskovits, 1996. University of Chicago Press. Information: Dave Aftandilian, Tel (312) 702- 0279, FAX (312) 702 -9756. Email:

South-South Perspectives is a newsletter published by the South- South Cooperation Program on environmentally sound socio-economic development in the humid tropics. It aims to maintain links between the participants of the program and to provide information related to research on Biosphere Reserves. The newsletter is published in English, French, Spanish and Chinese. Information: Administrative Editor, UNESCO, Division of Ecological Sciences, Programme de Cooperation Sud-Sud, 7 Place de Fontenoy, 75 700 Paris, France. Tel: 33 1 45684146. FAX: 33 1 40659897. Email:

Juncaceae. Flora Neotropica volume 68. by Henrik Balslev. This taxonomic monograph includes history, taxonomic keys and descriptions, morphology and anatomy, karyology, palynology, and chemotaxonomy. Balslev treats 55 species within six genera. Also included are: distribution, floral biology, and indices of vernacular and scientific names. ISBN 0-89327-403-8. $29.50. New York Botanical Garden, Scientific Publications Department, Bronx, NY 10458-5126. Tel: (718) 817-8721. FAX: (718) 817-8842. Email: