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Research published by researchers associated with the Sibinaocha Watershed Project as of May 2009

Published output as of May 2009

Compiled by Anton Seimon



Initiated in 1997 for Anton Seimon’s doctoral dissertation study at the University of Colorado-Boulder, this field research initiative in the Cordilleras Vilcanota and Carabaya in southern Peru has greatly expanded in scale and scope, and has over the years incorporated a multinational group of scientists. Funding support to cover or offset costs for many of these excursions has been obtained by grants from a variety of sources. These include NASA’s Earth System’s Science division, the Beverly Sears small grants program at the University of Colorado, the National Geographic Society, the National Science Foundation, CIRES at the University of Colorado, The Earth Institute at Columbia University, the Columbia Lamont-Doherty Climate Center, the ALARM consortium of the European Union, and private foundations and donors. Research foci have included regional climatology and climate history from ice core analysis; tropical deglaciation; climate change impacts on alpine ecological systems and highland human populations; surveys of avifauna, mammals and herps; emerging infectious disease of amphibians; soil microbial biology; environmental impacts of road building across ecological corridors; and social and environmental consequences of informal gold mining operations. These efforts have yielded the following scientific publications and media products.


Peer-reviewed scientific publications


  1. Barry, R.G., and A. Seimon: Climatic fluctuations in the mountains of the Americas and their significance. Ambio, 24, 364-370 (2000)
  2. Seimon, A.: Peru’s Cordillera Carabaya: Dilemmas of Infrastructure and Energy Development in Remote Mountain Ranges. In Mountains of the World: Energy and Infrastructure. Mountain Agenda and the Swiss Agency for Development, Berne Switzerland (2001)
  3. Jenkins C.L. and P. Zahler: Using geographic information systems to identify hotspots of amphibian biodiversity in the Andes of southern Peru. Pp. 247-254. In: Proceedings of the Congress on Conservation of Biodiversity in the Andes and the Amazon Basin. (R.W. Bussman and S. Lange, eds.), INKA e.V. Munich, Germany. (2002)
  4. Seimon, A.: Improving climatic signal representation in tropical ice cores: A case study from the Quelccaya Ice Cap, Peru, Geophysical Research Letters, 30, 1,772-1,776 (2003)
  5. Doyle, K.L., P. Zahler and C. Aucca Chutas:  Biodiversity and the Case for Preservation of the Sibinacocha Watershed. Lyonia4(1):43-48 (2003)
  6. A.: Climatic variability and environmental response in an Andean alpine watershed, Cordillera Vilcanota, Peru. Doctoral dissertation, Department of Geography, University of Colorado at Boulder (2004)
  7. Halloy, S.R.P., A. Seimon, K. Yager and A. Tupayachi: Multi-dimensional (climatic, biodiversity, socioeconomic, and agricultural) context of changes in land use in the Vilcanota watershed, Peru. In Land Use Changes and  Mountain Biodiversity. E.M. Spehn, M. Liberman and C. Körner (eds.), CRC Press, Boca Raton (2005)
  8. S.R.P., R. Ortega, K. Yager and A. Seimon, 2005: Traditional Andean cultivation systems and implications for sustainable land use. Acta Horticulturae, (ISHS) 670: 31-55
  9. Seimon, T.A., S. Halloy, G. Hoernig, P. Sowell, A. Seimon: Identification of Chytridiomycosis in Telmatobius marmoratus at 4,450m, Cordillera Vilcanota, Peru. Monografia Herpetologia 7:273-281 (2005)
  10. Seimon, A., Halloy, S.R.P., and T.A. Seimon: Recent observation of a proliferation of Ranunculus trichophyllus in high-altitude Lakes of the Mount Everest region: comment, Arctic, Antarctic and Alpine Research, 39(2), pp. 340–341. (2007)
  11. R. Nemergut, S. P. Anderson, C. C. Cleveland, A. P. Martin, A. E. Miller, A. Seimon and S. K. Schmidt: Microbial community succession in an unvegetated, recently-deglaciated soil, Microbial Ecology, 53(1): 110-122. (2007)
  12. Seimon, A., T.A. Seimon (co-lead authors), P. Daszak, S. Halloy, P. Sowell, B. Konecky, L.M. Schloegel, C.A. Aguilar, J. Simmons, and A. Hyatt: Upward range extension of Andean anurans to extreme elevations in response to tropical deglaciation. Global Change Biology, 13:288-299 (2007)
  13. Von May R., Catenazzi , Angulo A., Brown J.L., Carrillo J., Chávez G., Córdova J., Curo A., Delgado A., Enciso M.A., Gutiérrez R., Lehr E., Martínez J.L., Medina-Müller M., Miranda A., Neira D.R., Ochoa J.A., Quiroz A.J., Rodríguez D.A., Rodríguez L.O., Salas A.W., Seimon T.A., Seimon A., Siu-Ting K., Suárez J, Torres C., Twomey E.   Current state of conservation knowledge on threatened amphibian species in Peru. Tropical Conservation Science (2008)
  14. Schmidt, S. K., Reed, S. C., Nemergut, D. R., Grandy, A. S., Cleveland, C. C., N.Weintraub, M., Hill, A., Costello, E. K., Meyer, A. F., Neff, J. C., and Martin, A. M.: The earliest stages of ecosystem succession in high-elevation (5000 meters above sea level), recently deglaciated soils. Proceedings of the Royal Society B-Biological Sciences, 275: 2793-2802. (2008)
  15. Schmidt, S. K., Sobieniak-Wiseman, L. C., Kageyama, S. A., Halloy, S. R. P., and Schadt, C. W.: Mycorrhizal and Dark-Septate Fungi in Plant Roots above 4270 Meters Elevation in the Andes and Rocky Mountains. Arctic, Antarctic, and Alpine Research, 40: 576-583. (2008)
  16. Halloy, S. R. P., Yager, K., García, C., and Beck, S.: South America: Climate Monitoring and Adaptation Integrated Across Regions and Disciplines. In Settele, J. (ed.), Atlas of Biodiversity Risks – from Europe to the globe, from stories to maps. Sofia & Moscow: Pensoft ( In press 2009.
  17. Schmidt, S.K., D. R. Nemergut, A. E. Miller, K.R. Freeman, A.J. King and A. Seimon: Microbial Activity and Diversity During Extreme Freeze-Thaw Cycles in Periglacial Soils, 5400 m Elevation, Cordillera Vilcanota, Peru. Extremophiles, in review 2009.


Popular media, radio and television


  1. National Public Radio “National Geographic Radio Expeditions”: Peru’s Transoceanic Highway and the Rainforest, Nov 2000.
  2. Television documentary “Lost Land of the Andes”, National Geographic Explorer, first screened May 2001
  3. Conover, T: Peru’s long haul: Highway to riches or ruin? National Geographic Magazine, June 2003
  4. Zahler, P.I: Peruvinations. Epiphany: a Literary Journal4: 155-165. (2004)

  1. Krajick, K., and C. Peter, 2006: Living the High Life – The mountaintop environment of the Andes harbors a Noah’s ark of previously undocumented species. Natural History Magazine, September 2006
  2. A. Seimon, S. Halloy, P. Sowell, T. Seimon, K. Yager and others: Changes in biodiversity patterns in the high Andes: Understanding the consequences and seeking adaptation to global change. Submitted to Mountain Forum Newsletter, March 2009


Anton and Preston processing samples

Dr. Anton Seimon and Preston Sowell processing snow samples high in the Sibinacocha watershed.