One of world’s most endangered forests originally planted by ancient South Americans, discover archaeologists

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One of world’s most endangered forests originally planted by ancient South Americans, discover archaeologists

Post by Didge on Fri May 18, 2018 5:08 am

Indigenous population of Chile, Brazil and Argentina cultivated monkey puzzle trees which are now threatened by modern farming.

Critically endangered swathes of forest found across parts of South America owe their existence to the indigenous people who have lived in harmony with them for centuries. Experts assumed monkey puzzle trees had expanded centuries ago due to wetter and warmer weather spreading across the region.

However, new research suggests Southern Je communities played an active role in their creation, cultivating the trees for food and other purposes. "Our research shows these landscapes were man-made,” said Dr Mark Robinson, an archaeologist at the University of Exeter.

“Communities settled on grassland, and then – perhaps because they modified the soil, protected seedlings or even planted trees – established these forests in places where geographically they shouldn't have flourished."

https://www.independent.co.uk/environment/south-america-forest-indigenous-people-chile-brazil-argentina-a8356501.html

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