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Revista chilena de historia natural

versión impresa ISSN 0716-078X


DIAZ, IVÁN A. et al. Terrestrial vertebrates of the Río Clarillo National Reserve, central Chile: representation and conservation. Rev. chil. hist. nat. [online]. 2002, vol.75, n.2, pp.433-448. ISSN 0716-078X.

We analyzed the representation, distribution and conservation perspectives of terrestrial vertebrates in the Río Clarillo National Reserve, central Chile. During periodical surveys conducted between 1987 and 1996, we determined the composition and altitudinal distribution of the terrestrial vertebrates in this Reserve. We recorded 127 species (22 mammals, 85 birds, 15 reptiles and five amphibians), that accounted for 69 % of all vertebrates expected by their geographic distribution and habitat use. In addition, 32 species (25 %) belonging to some threatened conservation category. The vertebrate richness decreased with the altitude, from 101 species at 870 m to eight species at 3,050 m. Vertebrate richness is concentrated below 1,600 m supporting 109 species, with 55 species not observed at higher altitudes. Over the 1,600 m we recorded 57 species. Paradoxically, 31 % of the Reserve area are below 1,600 m and 69 % are above 1,600 m. Our results suggest that the Reserve area is not enough to support viable populations of the majority of their terrestrial vertebrates. Private properties around the Reserve are covered by extensive sclerophyllous forests under 1,600 m, which could be a source of vertebrates. Therefore, it is necessary to conduct conservation strategies in the reserve and these private areas and monitor periodically the population of vertebrates, in order to determine if populations are increasing or decreasing

Palabras clave : conservation; terrestrial vertebrates; Río Clarillo National Reserve; sclerophyllous forests; central Chile.

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