Maranhão Babaçu forests

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The Maranhão Babaçu forests is a tropical moist broadleaf forest ecoregion of north-central Brazil.


The Maranhão Babaçu forests cover an area of 142,300 square kilometers (54,900 sq mi), extending across northeastern and central Maranhão state and northern Piauí state. The forests form a transition between the equatorial forests of Amazonia to the west and the drier savannas and xeric shrublands to the south and east. The ecoregion is bounded by the Maranhão mangroves and the Northeastern Brazil restingas along the coast to the north, the Tocantins-Araguaia-Maranhão moist forests of Amazonia across the Pindaré River to the northwest and west, the Cerrado tropical savanna to the south, and the Caatingas xeric shrublands to the east.


The Flora of the ecoregion is varied, with the western portion of the region hosting tall and diverse moist evergreen and semi-deciduous forests, while the eastern portion is a mosaic of open woodlands and shrublands, with patches of dry savanna. Seasonally wet savannas are found on the lower reaches of the major rivers.

The dominant tree in the region is the Babaçu palm (Attalea speciosa), an oil palm that occurs naturally along the southern edge of the Amazonian forests, but whose predominance has been extended by its tolerance to human-caused fires and forest clearing.


Conservation and threats[edit]

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