SPINELLI Gustavo Ricardo
congresos y reuniones científicas
La iniciativa Darwin para la creacion de capacidad taxonomica para el estudio de los insectos acuaticos en el norte de Patagonia, Argentina
BROOKS SJ; HERNANDEZ LM; MASSAFERRO J; SPINELLI GR
Huerta Grande, Cordoba
Simposio; VII Congreso Argentino de Entomologia; 2008
Sociedad Entomológica Argentina
This project was funded from September 2006 for three years by the British Government?s Darwin Initiative programme. The function of the Darwin Initiative is to promote biodiversity studies, knowledge transfer and capacity building in countries that include areas of high biodiversity. The focus of our project is the Nahuel Huapi National Park (NHNP) in northern Patagonia, Argentina. The park has its centre at the resort town of Bariloche and includes a wide range of wetlands, including montane streams, lowland lakes and marshes, distributed within temperate rainforest and arid steppe. The project includes a team of freshwater insect specialists and geographers from Britain and Argentina who are sampling a large number of wetland sites throughout NHNP. The material will be identified and stored in a fully referenced and accessible collection at La Plata Museum and the Natural History Museum, London. Darwin Initiative funding has been used to equip a biodiversity laboratory at National Park Headquarters in Bariloche and also a field station at Puerto Blest. Information on the insect species in NHNP will be entered into a GIS database, together with a vegetation classification and wetland characteristics, to model freshwater insect data spatially and create a biodiversity database, the first of its kind in Patagonia. A range of identification guides to the freshwater insects found in the park are being produced. These range from simple, pictorial charts of the major groups, which are designed to encourage non-specialists to develop an interest in freshwater insects and appreciate the value of wetlands, to specialist species-level identification manuals. The project team has begun to train National Park Rangers, fishermen and students in freshwater ecology and to identify freshwater insects and undertake biomonitoring programmes to assess river water quality and the impact of pollution on river ecosystems in the region. Educational posters and media articles and interviews have been used to promote a wider awareness of the value and sustainable use of wetlands. We hope that the experiences we gain during the project, the insect collections and databases, the publications, and the many other products, will be used to further enhance wetland conservation throughout Argentina and southern South America.