Honorary Research Associate
Foreign Language(s):Portuguese, French, Spanish, Latin
Qualifications & Appointments
BSc, Natural Resource Management (Forestry), Rutgers Univ., 1986
Neotropical plant taxonomy with an emphasis on Chrysobalanaceae and Ebenaceae; Amazon flora/biodiversity and pollination biology.
Currently engaged in PhD research, working on the infrageneric relationships of Couepia (71 spp.), a Neotropical genus in the Chrysobalanaceae. It has its centre of diversity in Amazonian rainforests and in the Atlantic Forest. Couepia is of local economic importance. Several species are known to be widely used and cultivated throughout the Amazon and NE Brazil for their edible fruit and oil, and for their wood. Eight species are known only from type or are poorly known, and some are of critical conservation interest. The thesis work aims to understand the evolutionary processes using combined data analysis (alpha-taxonomy and molecular data), to elucidate phylogenetic relationships among Couepia and its potential close relatives (Acioa and Maranthes), and within Couepia to produce an infrageneric classification and investigate biogeographical patterns in relation to taxonomy, and to understand the evolution of bat- versus moth-pollination using the family as an example. Also involved in ongoing taxonomic work with Neotropical Ebenaceae, with an emphasis on Brazilian species. Interested in the Amazon flora, and otherwise involved in the production of Checklists.
Selected Recent Publications
- Prance, G.T. & Sothers, C.A. (2003). Chrysobalanaceae 1: Chrysobalanus to Parinari. Species Plantarum: Flora of the World Part 9. 1–319.
- Prance, G.T. & Sothers, C.A. (2003). Chrysobalanaceae 2: Acioa to Magnistipula. Species Plantarum: Flora of the World Part 10. 1–268.
- Sothers, C.A. (2003). New species of Diospyros (Ebenaceae) from Brazil. Kew Bulletin 58: 473-477.
- Pollard, B.J., Sothers, C.A. & Prance, G.T. (2004). A new subspecies of Magnistipula Engl. (Chrysobalanaceae) from the Bali Ngemba Forest Reserve. In Harvey, Y., Pollard, B.J., Darbyshire, I., Onana, J.-M. & Cheek, M. (eds) The Plants of Bali Ngemba Forest Reserve, Cameroon. A Conservation Checklist. Kew: Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.
- Sothers, C.A. (2004). Ebenaceae. In Smith, N.P., Mori, S.A., Henderson, A., Stevenson, D.W. & Heald, S.V. (eds) Flowering Plants of the Neotropics. Princeton University Press and The New York Botanical Garden Press. 134–136.
Selected Earlier Publications
- Jørgensen, P.M. & León-Yánez, S. (eds) (1998). Catalogue of Vascular Plants of Ecuador. Ebenaceae pp. 444. Missouri Botanical Garden Press. [C. Sothers reviewed Ebenaceae].
- Sothers, C. & Berry, P.E. (1998). Ebenaceae. In Steyermark, J.A., Berry, P.E. & Holst, B.K. (eds) Flora of the Venezuelan Guayana Vol. 4. St. Louis: Missouri Botanical Garden. 704-712.
- Ribeiro, J.E.L.S., Hopkins, M.J.G., Vicentini, A., Sothers, C.A., Costa, M.A.S., Brito, J.M., Souza, M.A.D., Martins, L.H., Lohmann, L.G., Assunção, P.A.C.L., Pereira, E.C., Silva, C.F., Mesquita, M.R. & Procópio, L.C. (1999). Flora da Reserva Ducke: Guia de identificação das plantas vasculares de uma floresta de terra firme na Amazônia Central. Manaus: INPA, DFID. 800 pp.
- Hopkins, M.J.G., Fortune-Hopkins, H.C. & Sothers, C.A. (2000). Nocturnal pollination of Parkia velutina by Megalopta bees and its possible significance in the evolution of chiropterophily. Journal of Tropical Ecology 16: 733–746.
- Sothers, C.A. (2000). Diospyros cavalcantei (Ebenaceae): a new species from Amazonia. Kew Bulletin 55: 471-475.