Strategies for Genetic Conservation of Trees in the Peruvian Amazon.

TitleStrategies for Genetic Conservation of Trees in the Peruvian Amazon.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2001
AuthorsNeill GA, Dawson I, Sotelo-Montes C, Guarino L, Current D, Guariguata M, Weber J
JournalBiodiversity and Conservation
Start Page837
Keywordsagroforestry, genetic conservation, genetic erosion, Peruvian Amazon, tree genetic resources
AbstractForestry practices and high rates of land clearance for agriculture are causing genetic erosion of valuable tree species in the Peruvian Amazon, thereby endangering the economic sustainability of communities and limiting Peru’s opportunities for the development of new timber and non-timber forest products. The potential utility and limitations of six low-input interventions to help forestall further genetic erosion in the region are discussed, with a focus on local community involvement. Improved agroforestry systems may help reduce deforestation by increasing farm productivity, although methods to increase the currently low adoption rate of these technologies need to be developed. Use of strategic tree domestication techniques can also improve farm productivity and prevent inadvertent genetic drift and inbreeding associated with traditional domestication practices, although to have a major impact, current programs need to be extended across the region. Woodlot forestry could supplant selective extraction of timber and offers an attractive opportunity for poverty alleviation if appropriate credit and land tenure policies can be developed.