ETHNOZOOLOGY AS COMPLEMENTARY METHOD TO INVENTORY MEDIUM AND LARGE-BODIED MAMMALS: THE CASE STUDY OF SERRA DO OURO BRANCO, BRAZIL
Keywords:Atlantic Forest, Cerrado, Mammalia, Miguel Burnier, Minas Gerais
We evaluated the use of both ethnozoological and conventional sampling methods to the inventory medium and large-bodied mammals. Our study was conducted at Serra do Ouro Branco, southern portion of Espinhaço Range, Minas Gerais state, Brazil. Ethnozoological methods comprehended interviews and projective tests carried out with 107 residents of three communities, while the conventional sampling was 36 days of diurnal and nocturnal census. We registered 28 mammal species through ethnozoological methods and 20 through conventional methods. Considering the long coexistence of the residents with local fauna and the temporal limitations of conventional methods, it was expected to find a small richness through conventional methods. However, it is important to stress that these methods are complementary and species level identification in many cases would be not possible without conventional sampling. In addition, considering the difficulties to sample mammals, the union of these approaches was positive and had the advantage of involving the local population in the process. The interviews provided additional information that may contribute to understand the conservation status of the species locally and to elaborate conservation strategies based on the interactions of the local human population with the mammals.