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As many of yall know, Brazil holds a special place in my heart. I have been going down there for the past five years doing my own research on galact morphs and living with the indigenous Indians there. Well, in case yall didnt know there is a large portion of the Amazon in danger of being destroyed by the Belo Monte Dam. It brings me great sorrow to announce that this week the Brazilian government gave the green light to begin construction for this dam.

Here is a recap on some of the info i have posted about this dam:
The Belo Monte Dam is a project that was first thought of and planned back in 1975. Its plan/ purpose are to provide Brazil with much need power so they can continue to grow. Its maximum output of power is geared to be around 11,223 mega watts or MW. The finished damage to the region if this dam is built is going to be astronomical. We are talking about thousands and thousands of pristine Amazon being flooded, several plants/animals that could become extinct, along with 20,000 people being forced to move life as they know it will be under water, this isn’t even counting the native that live in this region either. The power created from this dam will mostly be used for corporations that are located in the Amazon nearby that are manufacturing plants of: aluminum, gold, titanium, etc. This project has been stopped once in the 90’s and we can do it again!

As I am sure many of yall have seen the movie Avatar, directed by James Cameroon; what some of yall might not know though is this movie has a lot of similarities of what is going on in the Rio Xingu area today and this Belo Monte Dam project. James Cameroon himself has become a supporter of a non-profit organization called Amazon Watch. He has made several trips down to the region and has spoken out to the president of Brazil and the public about why this project is so wrong. I have attached a short video below that allows you to hear James’s thoughts on this project.

The main reason why I am posting about this region though is it an area that affects me personally too. This region is where I got my love for dart frogs really and became more serious in the hobby because I found my first wild poison dart frog, a galactonotus. Another reason why this area means a lot to me is because this is my second home basically. I have traveled to this region and lived with the natives here for the past five years off and on throughout that time frame. I have come to fall in love with these people and consider them part of my family.

These natives have lived in this region for thousands of years and they don’t need our help to provide a better life for them. They did fine without our help for thousands of years and if we can help it, they will continue to do so. We would be losing at least three different native tribes to this area and possibly their knowledge of medicinal plants, language, and culture that makes them unique to any other group in the world. We would also be risking the fact that we could see the L-46 pleco, the plant eating piranha, the pink river dolphin, the Xingu dart frog, Allobates Crombiei, possible undiscovered or site specific galactontous morphs, any more species due to the flooding/ altering the rivers flow become permanently extinct or extinct locals of these species disappear before our eyes.

I have partnered up with Amazon Watch to help but a stop to this dam. Please check them out at www.amazonwatch.com and help out any way possible.

Thanks,
 

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Chris, have you looked at the link you provided? If yes, please explain how a site for watches and traveling helps.I don't see the connection.
 

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This was brought to my attention on Tuesday and I thought that project was pretty much dead, what and who resurrected this thing? My friend said there were protests outside of the Brazilian consulate here on Sixth Avenue (Avenue of the Americas) in NYC. This is a sad day.. Hopefully the fight will continue.

Peter Keane
 

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I know there's probably a ton of red tape involved, and this would probably have to be done by Brazilian citizens given their stance on exportation, but what are the chances of having someone go through the soon to be affected areas and legally collecting a small number of specimens for captive preservation programs? I know there's no chance of Noah's arking every species of doomed animal, but to deny the opportunity for that sort of preservation to someone who lives in the country would be pretty asinine.

Obviously, I'm sure the animals would have to stay in the country and would never find their way here, but preserving some small piece of these populations in captivity seems a better alternative to totally wiping them from the planet if the dam gets the full go-ahead. Best case scenario would obviously be a cancellation of the project, but I sure hope SOMEBODY down there is thinking about Plan B. I would think a zoo or university could have a fairly decent shot at pulling it off? The Universidad de Los Andes in Colombia has legally collected Lehmanni and histrionicus, so maybe the Brazilian government would grant a university the opportunity to do the same.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I know there's probably a ton of red tape involved, and this would probably have to be done by Brazilian citizens given their stance on exportation, but what are the chances of having someone go through the soon to be affected areas and legally collecting a small number of specimens for captive preservation programs? I know there's no chance of Noah's arking every species of doomed animal, but to deny the opportunity for that sort of preservation to someone who lives in the country would be pretty asinine.

Obviously, I'm sure the animals would have to stay in the country and would never find their way here, but preserving some small piece of these populations in captivity seems a better alternative to totally wiping them from the planet if the dam gets the full go-ahead. Best case scenario would obviously be a cancellation of the project, but I sure hope SOMEBODY down there is thinking about Plan B. I would think a zoo or university could have a fairly decent shot at pulling it off? The Universidad de Los Andes in Colombia has legally collected Lehmanni and histrionicus, so maybe the Brazilian government would grant a university the opportunity to do the same.
Its great in theory, but as of now I haven't heard of anything yet...not saying that there isn't anything though. I talked to Donte with ABG who did the ecological study and according to him there is only 3-4 species that might be in danger, I and other researchers/ biologist beg to differ. Ill let you know if I hear of anything being done though. It will be several years before this dam is even built.
 

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Petition signed and link posted to facebook and passed on to my friend's at new york audubon.
 

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Not to mention Chris did go to Brazil for a short time, but it was with a church group and not for frogs study's,

Michael
 
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