Faunal checklist of the Aripo Savannas (Scientific Reserve)

Sharon Schwab

Abstract


Most of the research in the Aripo Savannas has centered on the unique plants and soil conditions of the area, leaving the fauna relatively unknown and potentially misunderstood. Baseline information on species' abundance, habitat preferences, home ranges, social behaviour and birth/mortality rates is almost entirely lacking. Those persons who would pursue faunal studies in the Aripo Savannas are often discouraged by the inherent dificulty of obtaining necessary data from an area which, until recently, had not been given legal protection or considered of national concern.

During 1986 and part of 1987, Trinidad Parks and Wildlife staff, members of the Field Naturalists' Club, faculty and students of the University of the West Indies, Emperor Valley Zoo staff, and pivate citizens worked together to compile a comprehensive species list of the area. This list represents only a begining for the fauna of the Aripo Savannas; future naturalists and researchers are left with the enormous task of expanding this list and understanding the complex ecological relationships between the members of the flora and fauna of this unique ecosystem.


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