Illicit Crops and Armed Conflict as Constraints on Biodiversity Conservation in the Andes Region

Coca, once grown for local consumption in the Andes, is now produced for external markets, often in areas with armed conflict. Internationally financed eradication campaigns force traffickers and growers to constantly relocate, making drug-related activities a principal cause of forest loss. The impact on biodiversity is known only in general terms, and this article presents the first regional analysis to identify areas of special concern, using bird data as proxy. The aim of conserving all species may be significantly constrained in the Santa Marta and Perijá mountains, Darién, some parts of the Central Andes in Colombia, and between the middle Marañón and middle Huallaga valleys in Peru. Solutions to the problem must address the root causes: international drug markets, long-lasting armed conflict, and lack of alternative income for the rural poor.

A New Chocoan Species of Lonchophylla (Chiroptera: Phyllostomidae)

Lonchophylla is a diverse genus of glossophagines characterized by large, forwardly projecting inner upper incisors and the absence of zygomatic arches. Seven species are currently recognized, including the large-bodied (greatest length of skull .24.5 mm) robusta, handleyi, hesperia, and bokermanni and the small-bodied (greatest length of skull, 24.5 mm) thomasi, dekeyseri, and mordax. Lonchophylla species range throughout the Neotropics and include endemics in Amazonia, the Cerrado, and the arid regions of coastal Peru and Ecuador. In this paper I describe a new large-bodied species, Lonchophylla chocoana, from the subtropical rainforests of the Choco ́ in southwestern Colombia and northwestern Ecuador. I also document the diagnostic external, craniodental, and mitochondrial characters of the new species and summarize morphological characteristics for the new species and its sympatric congeners.