Amazon-dwellers lived sustainably for 5,000 years 亞馬遜雨林原住民五千年來對生態環境損害極小

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一項深入研究亞馬遜雨林歷史的研究發現,原住民在此居住了數千年,卻 「沒有造成明顯的物種損失或干擾」。

This was an exercise in botanical archaeology, with the researchers examining layers of rainforest soil excavated in a remote corner of northeastern Peru. They dated each layer and studied the microscopic plant fossils locked inside. This revealed that there had been little change in the composition of plants growing in this part of the rainforest for 5,000 years before Europeans arrived in the Amazon.

這是一個植物考古學的課題,研究人員們檢驗了在秘魯東北部偏遠角落挖掘出來的雨林土壤層。他們推算出了每層土壤的年代,並研究了鎖在其中的微型植物化石。結果表明,在歐洲人到達亞馬遜地區以前的五千年內,生長在這片雨林中的植物成分幾乎沒有變化。

Previous research has suggested that the rainforest was intensively managed and modified by indigenous peoples. But this evidence suggests that people lived for millennia among the Amazon’s biodiversity without disturbing it.

過去的研究認為,這片雨林曾被各原住民族密集地監管和改造。但最新的證據表明,原住民在生物種類多樣的亞馬遜地區生活了數千年,卻未對其造成干擾。

That indigenous knowledge, for example, about which species thrive best in which locations, could be vital in helping modern conservationists to protect what’s now a landscape under threat.

原住民掌握的知識,比如哪些物種最適合在哪些地方繁衍生息,對幫助當下的保育人士維護這一現面臨威脅的自然景觀來說,可能是至關重要的。

詞彙表

botanical archaeology 植物考古學
excavated 被挖掘
dated 確定年代
composition 成分,構成
intensively 深入地,密集地
indigenous 原住民的,本土的
millennia 數千年(單數為 「millennium」)
vital 至關重要的

閱讀理解:請在讀完上文後,回答下列問題。

1. How did researchers use the layers of soil they excavated in their research?

2. What did this research show about the Amazon’s indigenous peoples’ past relationship with the area’s biodiversity?

3. Who might this research help in protecting the Amazon in the future?

4. True or false? There has been little change in the composition of plants since the Europeans arrived in the area.

答案  

1. How did researchers use the layers of soil they excavated in their research?
Researchers dated each layer and studied the microscopic plant fossils locked inside.

2. What did this research show about the Amazon’s indigenous peoples’ past relationship with the area’s biodiversity?
This research has suggested that people lived for millennia among the Amazon’s biodiversity without disturbing it.

3. Who might this research help in protecting the Amazon in the future?
This research could be vital in helping modern conservationists to protect the Amazon in the future.

4. True or false? There has been little change in the composition of plants since the Europeans arrived in the area.

False. Research has shown there had been little change in the composition of plants growing in this part of the rainforest for 5,000 years before Europeans arrived in the Amazon.