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Peru

James L. Luteyn

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      The páramos of Peru, locally called "jalcas," are located north of 8°S latitude in the northern portions of the Cordillera Occidental and the Cordillera Oriental, in the departments of Piura, Cajamarca, Amazonas, Lambayeque, San Martín, and La Libertad. Peruvian páramos are very similar to those of southern Ecuador in vegetation and general physiognomy. They may begin at the low elevations of 2900-3100 m especially east of the Río Marañón, where the cordillera is lower in general and moister air from the Amazon Basin predominates. The páramos of Peru seem to be more grass-dominated and less shrubby overall, with many more rock outcrops. In the region north of the city of Cajamarca, the páramos are intensively cultivated up to about 3500 m with corn and potatoes; between 3500 m and about 3800 m there are now many tree plantations of Pinus. In the more eastern páramos, around the Jalcas de Calla Calla (Balsas-Leimebamba road), for example, there is less population pressure and the páramos may occur as low as 3000 m. In Peru, páramo (jalca) includes a total of 420,000 hectares (I. Sánchez Vega, pers. comm.) or ca. 4200 km2.
      The only Peruvian national park within our range that includes páramo is Río Abiseo, although Huascarán (just south of 8°S latitude in the Cordillera Blanca) may also have páramo (cf. D. N. Smith, 1988).
      For additional discussion about Peruvian páramo vegetation, see D. N. Smith (1988), Weberbauer (1911, 1936, 1945), Young and León (1988, 1990), Young and Reynel (1997), and Young et al. (1997).

Bibliographic Sources for Locations of Páramos

PERU

American Geographical Society of New York. 1949. Iquitos. Map, SA-18. Provisional edition. A. Hoen and Company, Baltimore.

__.  1938. Piura. Map SB-17. 1:1,000,000. Provisional edition. A. Hoen and Company, Baltimore.

Carta Nacional. 1:100,000.

Dillon, M. O. & A. Sagástegui A. 1986. Jalcophila, a new genus of an andean Inuleae (Asteraceae). Brittonia 38: 162-167.

Herrera de Loja, B. 1980. Revisión de las especies peruanas del género Gynoxys. Bol. Soc. Peruana Bot. 8(1, 2): 3-74.

Instituto Geográfico Nacional. Mapas fisico-político. [Piura 1:500,000; Lambayeque 1:3,000,000; Cajamarca 1:480,000; La Libertad 1:420,000; Amazonas 1:600,000.]

Smith, D. N. 1988. Flora and vegetation of the Huascarán National Park, Ancash, Peru, with preliminary taxonomic studies for a manual of the flora. Ph.D. Dissertation. Iowa State University, Ames.


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