Mata Atlântica

The Mata Atlântica is a region of tropical and subtropical forest that stretches along the Atlantic coast of Brazil and down into the north-east region of Missiones in Argentina and parts of eastern Paraguay. The original surface area covered 15% of Brazil's total landmass, totaling 1,290,692 km² (498,339 sq mi). Today, only 7% of the forest remains, devastated by human expansion, urban sprawl, logging, and construction to only 4,000 km2 (1,500 sq mi), much of which is concentrated in the region of Rio de Janeiro, and is the very jungle that blankets the mountains surrounding Paraty and Trindade. This remaining 7% of jungle is home to some of the most lush biodiversity and endemic species on earth, many facing a serious threat of extinction.  

"Approximately 40 percent of its vascular plants and up 60 percent of its vertebrates are endemic species, meaning they are found nowhere else in the world. The official threatened species list of Brazil contains over 140 terrestrial mammal species found in Atlantic Forest. In Paraguay there are 35 species listed as threatened, and 22 species are listed as threatened in the interior portion of the Atlantic Forest of Argentina. Nearly 250 species of amphibians, birds, and mammals have become extinct due to the result of human activity in the past 400 years. Over 11,000 species of plants and animals are considered threatened today in the Atlantic Forest. Over 52% of the tree species and 92% of the amphibians are endemic to this area. The forest harbors around 20,000 species of plants, with almost 450 tree species being found in just one hectare in some occasions. New species are continually being found in the Atlantic Forest. In fact, between 1990 and 2006 over a thousand new flowering plants were discovered."






Efforts are being made by Brazil's national park service to prevent further destruction of the forest but the most crucial forces are made by the inhabitants themselves. These people know what it means to live in harmony with nature, and if simply allowed to do so, they know that the jungle will restore itself. Mother Nature knows how to take care of herself, but she must be given the time and opportunity to do so...




Walking in the jungle, everything is green, wild, perfect, balanced. Savage beauty at it's finest. Flowers of the brightest colors, gifted only to those what an eye keen enough to notice their quiet presence.

Move slowly, listen intently, look for the tiniest details. A micro view of the Mata Atlântica...