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Lanyon lanyon at FMNH785.FMNH.ORG
Fri Sep 2 12:54:33 CDT 1994

           An International Symposium at The Field Museum
                           2-4 June 1995

     Tropical ecosystems--the world's richest in terms of biological
diversity--are in danger around the world, but nowhere more critically
than on Madagascar.  Tropical faunas and floras are at ever-increasing
risk here and elsewhere from expanding human populations and from
economies that rely heavily on extraction and exportation of natural
resources.  But tropical islands appear especially vulnerable to human
impacts; for example, native biotas of Hawaii and the West Indies
virtually collapsed following human colonization.  In each case, their
unique yet fragile biotas disappeared so rapidly and completely that we
have few clues about what happened and how such catastrophes might have
been averted.
     The island of Madagascar still supports countless species of plants
and animals found nowhere else.  Yet environmental changes--over several
time-scales and under both natural and human controls--have caused the
extinction of many species, and even survivors are now at grave risk.
To mitigate the calamitous extinction wave now underway in Madagascar and
to better understand tropical endangerment generally, we must carefully
examine the processes that have shaped the island's landscapes,
ecosystems, and cultures, as well as biotic responses to such changes.

     To address this urgent complex of issues, The Field Museum will
convene a three-day scientific meeting entitled "NATURAL AND HUMAN-
INDUCED CHANGE IN MADAGASCAR" on June 2-4, 1995 in Chicago.  The inter-
disciplinary program will be a complement to the symposium "Biogeography
of Madagascar" to be held by the Societe de Biogeographie in Paris in
September 1995.  The Chicago meeting will consist of presentations to the
general public, invited technical presentations, scientific workshops,
and contributed poster presentations organized around geological,
anthropological, biological, and resource management/conservation themes.

Invited speakers will include leading French, Malagasy and American
researchers.  Interested parties are urged to contact the meeting's
organizers for registration materials and/or additional information.

B. D. Patterson                                           S. M. Goodman
Center for Evolutionary                                        B.P. 738
   & Environmental Biology                          WWF Aires Protegees
The Field Museum                                     Antananarivo (101)
Chicago IL 60605-2496                                        MADAGASCAR
Tel 312-922-9410 ext 468                               FAX 261-2-348-88
FAX 312-663-5397                            Internet: symposia at

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