Manoela M Mollinari



I am broadly interested in understanding the impacts of human activities on tropical forests. Before my PhD, I worked with ecological restoration of the Atlantic forest within LERF – Laboratory of Ecology and Forest Restoration from ESALQ – USP, Brazil. With them, I studied mainly succession of tropical forests and worked especially on seed and seedling production of native species, both in southeast states of Brazil and in the Atlantic island of Fernando de Noronha, Pernambuco, in the northeast region. On the island, I was also part of the TAMAR project for conservation of sea turtles.

My PhD research is focused on investigating the impacts of tropical selective logging on the forest thermal environment and on forest flammability. Selective logging impacts forest structure with the opening of gaps and roads, which enables sun and wind to penetrate the forest interior.

A hotter and more desiccated environment will not only directly affect organisms that depend on thermal conditions, but also potentially increase the forest vulnerability to burning. Such impacts tend to be more pronounced over exceptionally hot and dry years, for instance with an El Niño event, but also tends to alleviate as forest regenerates.

Thus, my research investigates the thermal environment recovery following selective logging, the spatial connectivity of the thermal environment around logging gaps and roads on the landscape, and the impacts on forest flammability. Also, I’m working to better understand the interaction between climatic variation over time and anthropogenic effects in increasing fire risk in the Amazon.

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About me

I am a passionate vegan that truly believes that our choices can make a difference. I advocate that love and respect for life are key in creating a better, more just and ethic world. I love travelling and experiencing different cultures and food. Love and miss my little dogs and my big, loud family. I really enjoy spending time with my friends.