A forest is a living laboratory where the fauna and flora are under a permanent and formidable test of survival. In fact, it is sustained by a fragile equilibrium of the elements. The images that follow are a mere glimpse of the richest and most endangered habitats on earth: the forests of eastern coastal Brazil. Simply put, the Mata Atlântica or Rain Forests.
The diversity of the flora is such that scientists speak of “the highest percentages of endemism in the world: over 50% of the tree species (Mori et al. 1981) and 92% of the amphibians (Lynch 1979) are found nowhere else in the world”. (Northeastern Atlantic Coastal Forest Project Projeto Mata Atlântica Nordeste – Wm. Wayt Thomas and André M. Amorim).
Little is left of the original Mata Atlântica. Less than 8%. A biological disaster of enormous proportion to mankind. In spite of the local and international uproar, devastation goes on year after year. We are destroying what we are unable to create. A legacy of ignorance and arrogance towards our most valuable resource, the ecosystem.
Bromeliads are generous creatures. They supply food and shelter for other forms of life. And so are the sponsors and contributors of this site. Our gratitude to the Florida Council of Bromeliad Societies for their generosity in sharing with all of us this precious knowledge.
Photos are best viewed with a monitor resolution of 1480 x 1020 pixels and with low luminosity in the room. So dim your lights and take your time examining carefully each shot. May you find some peace and joy.
Thank you, Oscar
Rio de Janeiro, June 2006.
More information on the Mata Atlântica :