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Tropical Forests

Tropical forests are home to the overwhelming majority of our planet’s biological diversity. To monitor how changes in these ecosystems occur, Bartlett Arboretum staff members have set up plots in the tropical forest ecosystems of Amazonian Peru and Eastern Puerto Rico for long-term research. While both areas are in rural, protected forest areas, both continue to have periodic disturbances such as swidden agriculture in Peru and hurricanes in Puerto Rico. Monitoring plots set up after a disturbance over years and even decades can provide valuable data and insights into how tropical forests are able to recover from such disturbances, and what species, if any, may be lost should those disturbances become more frequent.