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Installation of Artificial Canopy Bridges

We built and installed 30 canopy bridges at 15 locations along BR-174 within the Waimiri-Atroari Indigenous Territory. In each location, there are two different models of bridges so that we can evaluate which model is more suitable for tree species with different modes of locomotion.

The characteristics of the two designs are based on the following criteria:

1) Low cost of materials, to accommodate both the project budget and to allow for potential wide-scale implementation by practitioners (if justified based on the results of our study);

2) Local availability of materials, which reduces cost and increases the likelihood that the structures, if proven effective, will be installed at a broad scale.

One of the bridge models consists of a linear structure made of braided rope and a steel cable. The other model was built with a net of ropes, high-density polymer tubes and steel cables. The bridges are anchored to concrete poles and connect the two sides of the road at forest canopy level.

The locations for artificial canopy bridges placement were determined by the leaders of Waimiri-Atroari community based on their knowledge on road mortality for arboreal species and sightings, especially for the spider monkey.

The pair of ACBs at each sampling site will be a maximum of 1 meter apart, effectively presenting animals with a choice between the two designs. Close proximity of the two designs controls for habitat variability at a small scale.