Jau National Park

A report of Jaú National Park

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Helena Bonici Geography 15/03/2012
13EA2 Ecosystems
It is found 200km north-west of Manaus and
extends 340km west from the confluence of the
rivers Jaú/Negro with a latitude of 61°26- 64°00W
and 1°40-3°00S longitude. Due to this, it falls
directly into the Rio Negro watershed of the
Amazonian central plain.
It is a 2,272,000ha area, which makes it the largest
national park in the Amazon basin.
Within this area, there 1500 river sources and a total
length of 5,700km in tributaries, which helps
account for the total volume of the River Amazon.
Due to its location around the Jaú River, it shows characteristics of those typically associated within a
drainage basin, as it has varying altitudes from 0-200m. At the source, and far west of the park, it is largely
consisted of flat-topped hills of heights of generally 150-200m that then have deep V-shaped valleys
within in them, indicating the upper course of the river from the source, where the water travels its
fastest. Then, the further east it gets, the lower the altitude.
It is not just the river which dictates the topography and landscape of the area, but also the sedimentary
types found within the park. 65% of all deposits are part of the Palaeocene and Pleistocene Solimões
formation within the table uplands. These deposits form barriers to the drainage, creating reservoirs and
new water bodies, known as ria lakes. There are also secondary waterways
within the area such as igarapés (streams) and paranás (braided channels).
Similarly, there are quaternary sediments which formed during glacial
periods of marine regressions. The glacial deposits help to illustrate the
carvings and shape of the valleys found within the park, which then
influences the present drainage patterns.
Many of the rivers in the park are also lined with beaches, consisting of
white sand. However, many of the rivers and water bodies flood (by ~
5.7-10.5 m for lakes and ~3m for streams) during
the wet season, when rainfall is at its highest,
averaging at about 2,500mm of precipitation
between December and April. The wet season
causes the temperature in the region to fall by
~1oC because the average range of temperature is
26oC. Temperature then increases as the dry season
enters and the rainfall and water levels decrease, so
that precipitation rates are 1,750mm averagely
between July and September. The absolute
maximum temperature is 31.7oC within the park
and the lowest temperatures are no colder than
The changes in water levels also affects pH levels, and the dry season causes the pH to increase, and the
soils and topography to become more alkaline, whilst the lower temperatures and higher rain fall causes a
fall in pH, to cause a higher acidity level, reaching 2.7 in some cases, which is the limit for many of the
aquatic organisms exist within the habitat.
"Criterion (ix): The varzea and igapó forests, lakes, rivers, and islands of the proposed site together
constitute physical and biological formations and demonstrate ongoing ecological processes in the
development of terrestrial and freshwater ecosystems. They include a constantly changing and evolving
mosaic of river channels, lakes, and landforms. The floating (and constantly moving and changing) mats

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Helena Bonici Geography 15/03/2012
13EA2 Ecosystems
of vegetation typical of the varzea watercourses include a significant number of endemic species,
including the largest array of electric fishes in the world. Anavilhanas contains the second largest
archipelago of river islands in the Brazilian Amazon.
Criterion (x): The expanded property substantially increases the already impressive protection offered by
Jaú National Park to the biological diversity, habitats, and endangered species found in the Central
Amazon region.…read more

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Helena Bonici Geography 15/03/2012
13EA2 Ecosystems
and highly inefficient and thus causing high amounts of pollution and damage to the surrounding
rainforest. The second kind is the "new mines" which were sold to transnational corporations for
profit and are now run by those. However, because the mines are not being run by people
indigenous to the land, many of the corporations overlook issues to the environment and the
damage the mines they run are having upon them.…read more


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