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On top of Brazil

In November, biologist Miguel Trefaut Rodrigues of the University of São Paulo (USP) led an expedition to the Imeri Mountains, an uninhabited region of Amazonia little explored by scientists. The mountains, which are among the highest and oldest in South America, could be the birthplace of many animal and plant lineages found in the Amazon and the Atlantic Forest. The team discovered many organisms not found elsewhere. The bromeliads in the foreground (Brocchinia hechtioides) are very common there and had only been identified twice before, both times on the border between Brazil and Venezuela.

Image submitted by Lúcia Lohmann, a botanist from USP’s Biosciences Institute