July 2012 to present, MSc study

The goal of this thesis is a thorough study of the genus Peperomia in the Yanachaga-Chemillén National Park in the department of Pasco in Peru. This region is one of the major biodiversity hotspots of Peperomia in in South America. Intensive fieldwork took place during seven weeks in July-August 2012. Field observations were combined with screening of the available herbarium specimens in the herbaria of the Museo de Historia Natural in Lima (USM) and of the Estación Biológica del Jardín Botánico de Missouri in Oxapampa (HOXA).

Field collections are currently being studied and compared with our photo database, and the available literature, such as the contribution on Peperomia to the Flora of Peru (Trelease 1936) and the catalogue of the flowering plant and gymnosperms of Peru (Brako & Zarucchi 1993).

The ultimate aim is to achieve a checklist and database of the Peperomia species that occur in the Yanachaga-Chemillén National Park, including detailed descriptions, photos and distribution data. This will support specific conservation actions by authorities of the Yanachaga-Chemillén National Park.
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Emma Scheiris (Ghent University Master thesis student)

Prof. Dr. Paul Goetghebeur
Dr. Marie-Stéphanie Samain

Associated laboratory technician at Ghent University:
Pieter Asselman

Dr. Guillermo Pino - Museo de Historia Natural, Lima, Peru
Rocio Rojas - Estación Biológica del Jardin Botanico de Missouri, Oxapampa, Peru
Genaro Yarupaitan - Yanachaga-Chemillén National Park, Peru

VLIR-UOS grant international mobility

Ghent University
Department of Biology
Research Group Spermatophytes