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Maria Joana Ferreira da Silva

Maria Joana Ferreira da Silva

Associate Researcher

Associate Researcher
Member type
CIBIO-InBIO, Universidade do Porto, Campus de Vairão, Rua Padre Armando Quintas. 4485-661 Vairão, Portugal
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Dr. Maria Joana Ferreira da Silva, Ph.D. in Biosciences, is an Associate Researcher on primate bushmeat in Guinea-Bissau, West Africa (FCT CEECIND/01937/2017, 2019-2025). From 2013 to 2019, she was an FCT-funded postdoctoral researcher (SFRH/BPD/88496/2012, interrupted five months for maternity leave) on landscape genetics of threatened non-human primates. Her main research areas are Primatology, Biological Anthropology and Conservation Genetics. She is interested in understanding the impact of anthropogenic activities on African non-human primates, namely on the species’ diversity, evolution, distribution, population structure and the conservation statuses. MJFS uses inter-disciplinary methods (e.g., social sciences and ethnography, population genetics and genomics, meta-barcoding and spatial ecology) to generate scientific-based information to improve local and regional conservation management of endangered and vulnerable primate species. Another current research line is the use of non-human primates as a model to understand admixture and gene flow patterns of early humans in the lower Zambezi basin and the Gorongosa region in Mozambique. She has published on different scientific themes such as perceptions of non-human primates by local communities, population genetics and determinants of gene flow, illegal wildlife trafficking and environmental crimes, behavioural ecology and adaptation, hybridization and human evolution (see for the full CV). She has investigated threatened African primates in Guinea-Bissau, Sierra Leone, Tanzania, Mauritania and Mozambique. She is a member of TROPIBIO and BIODESERTS research groups in CIBIO-InBIO and a senior researcher of the interdisciplinary and international Paleo Primate Project on human evolution in the Gorongosa National Park, Mozambique. She is an IUCN/ Red list invited-assessor and a member of the IUCN Primate exploitation/Human-Primate Interactions working group. She was the president of the Portuguese Primatology Association (APP) from 2019 to 2021. She is part of PRIMACTION, a consortium dedicated to education and environmental awareness to promote the long-term conservation of Guinea-Bissau non-human primates.

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