The Amazon River Forest

The Amazon River Forest : A Natural History of Plants, Animals, and People

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The floodplain forest of the Amazon is the last major agricultural frontier of the Americas. This unique habitat, inundated in some places to a depth of thirty feet a year, contains a marvellous variety of plant and animal resources that inhabitants have long reaped-fruit, nuts, building materials, fuelwood, and medicinal plants. While the floodplain has great potential for food production, its natural resource base is becoming increasingly threatened by ranching and agricultural expansion and impaired by inappropriate land-use practices. This important book, based both on field observations carried out over the past quarter century and historical material, demonstrates that knowledge possessed by area dwellers offers vital insights for promoting the sound economic development of the floodplain. Nigel Smith argues for the importance of balance between land-use systems, and suggests that research and development should be realigned to incorporate both modern science and traditional systems. Beautifully illustrated with the author's own photographs, this authoritative volume explores a broad range of ecological, historical, cultural, and socioeconomic issues, and offers practical suggestions for developing the floodplain that enhance, rather than destroy, more

Product details

  • Paperback | 220 pages
  • 177 x 253.2 x 11.9mm | 512.58g
  • Oxford University Press Inc
  • New York, United States
  • English
  • 0195126831
  • 9780195126839
  • 2,075,164

Review quote

Author Smith is indeed a rainforest expert, but also writes in an engaging manner...This book is recommended very highly because of its unique coverage and slant. Biologists, political scientists, sociologists, and professionals involved in policy making, sustainable development, and saving rainforests will find this book most useful. Good illustrations. * Choice *show more

About Nigel J. H. Smith

Nigel Smith has conducted field work in Amazonia for over a quarter of a century. He is the author of numerous books, including Floods of Fortune: Ecology and Economy Along the Amazon and The Enchanted Amazon River Forest: Stories from a Vanishing World. He consults with various organizations, including the World Bank, on sound practices for conservation and development, and is a fellow of the Linnean Society of London and the Guggenheim Foundation in New more

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