Large thriving network of settlements thrived in Columbian Amazon before European settlers

Both the Amazon and the Congo have been given the status of totally virgin rainforest, without any human impact. What is becoming increasingly clear is that this is not the case.

Instead it is the case, that the communities which lived here -sometimes in large numbers, lived in balance with the environment.

Pre Columbian settlement evidence in the Amazon

Archaeologists have found vast network of settlements in the Columbian Amazon, spanning hundreds or even thousands of square km, consisting of a main settlement with huge platforms, and smaller settlements spread out around. All are linked by causeways, and canals and reservoirs dotted the land to make agriculture possible.

To be sure, these settlements were low density, but they successfully lived in harmony with the rainforest for centuries.

Oddly, while these communities prospered for 1000 years, they disappeared before Columbus arrived, and it is not clear why.

How should this impact work these days? I am not sure. There are no large groups of modern people who have learnt to live in harmony with their environment, but clearly bush people have. Perhaps we need to follow their example – though the current indigenous people of the Amazon do not live in settlements of large size, otherwise we would have know about these centuries ago,

The manned wolf is being seen increasingly often in the Amazon rainforest

The manned wolf that looks rather like a fox on stilts. It is found throughout South American Savannahs

Not actually a fox or a wolf, the manned wolf exists in its own genus.

Living on open savannahs the manned wolf is unfortunately facing the loss of most of its habitat. Though we hear about the loss of the Amazon rainforest the most, all other ecosystems in South America are also under threat.

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Amazon rainforest: can it survive Bolsonaro?

I have been writing about Jair Bolsonaro for quite some time. Indeed, those who have been reading this blog for years will know that I became concerned in the run up to the election.

The destruction of the Amazon rainforest is hugely damaging. It is likely to effect the climate worldwide as well as carbon dioxide levels

He has a quite bizarre approach to many things. Indeed, his ruling style is very like Donald Trump. He doesn’t care about Brazil, merely that “his” people do well out of his presidency.

It is quite something, that academics and activists have come together to warn that with the increased attacks on the environmental protections, the Brazilian rainforest would not survive a second Bolsonaro term.

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