The Atlantic forest of eastern Brazil used to hug the coast and extend far in land, housing immensely rich and bio-diverse flora and fauna. Farming and development have stripped and fragmented the forest to 7% of its original scale. Where we're planting, it's down to 3%, but still, it is home to jaguars, ocelots (small wild cats), puma, the endangered black lion tamarin monkey and over 100 species of tree - including three on the red list.
The Law on Our Side
The amazing thing about Brazil is that legislation is in place that requires all farmland to be at least 20% forested, which means that farmers are required to reforest. This makes WeForest's role of planting forest corridors to link the remaining fragments of forest between Moro Do Diabo State Park and Iquacu National Park back together a much easier proposition and also means that the replanted forest has guaranteed protection.
It is very rare to find communities with a seed forest from which they can harvest seeds, but this project has one right next to the protected forest that is illegal to enter. From healthy seed stock, the women of these communities plant and tend the sapling nurseries, and the men go out to plant. The forest corridors are as close to the huge mix of trees in the remaining forest as one could hope for. We hope to help WeForest achieve its dream of doubling the existing forest cover as fast as it can be done.
How Your Trees are Saving Jaguars
In the Atlantic Forest of Brazil, the loss of forests is not only a problem for the climate but for jaguars and other large carnivores, who are at risk of extinction due to the loss of their habitat. There are currently only 300 jaguars left in the forest. But thanks to WeForest, Jaguars are getting a second chance at life.
One of our newly growing forest corridors on the Atlantic coast of Brazil.
Here you see one of the wildlife corridors in the planting site. At the beginning of the project, there was nothing but grass and a few cows; now, it is a forest used by indigenous animals.
Camera traps in the wildlife corridors capture the wildlife strolling in their increased habitat. Here you see a Brazilian tapir or lowland tapir whose status is vulnerable on the IUCN Red List due to habitat loss.
Iracy (mother of 5) explains why she likes working in the nurseries.
All video footage is the intellectual property of © IPE/WEFOREST.