Apr 13, 2010
Source: Cool Earth
The actions of humans and how they use the world's rainforests could actually have helped the Amazon and other areas to become some of the most biodiverse places on earth, it has been claimed.
According to an article in the New Scientist, "human activity may not be all bad news for the Amazon".
The source cited a study looking at savannahs in South America which showed the impact that farming in the areas had on bio-diversity in the past - with some appearing to benefit from the use of the land by humans.
In one mounded area, "alterations" to the ground by farming have seen the savannah fields newly inhabited by leaf cutter ants, termites and predatory ants, as well as fungus-growing ants which are capable of taking large amounts of matter to help build their nests.
"It's clear that a savannah with this heterogeneity will have a higher biodiversity than just a flat savannah," said scientist Doyle McKey, from the University of Montpellier 2.
It is thought that the Amazon is the most bio-diverse place on earth, boasting more than 50 per cent of all the world's species.