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Ben Valks

Ecological Restoration vs. Reforestation: Understand the difference!

By News Home

Reforestation is a generic term for replanting trees in a specific area with various goals, including (ecological) restoration. The restoration concept relates to a more complex and essential process that “assists the recovery of an ecosystem that has been degraded, damaged or destroyed” (SER, Society for Ecological Restoration).

Ecological restoration and reforestation are terms that we use often, which can sometimes be understood to mean the same thing. In the video below, Dimitrio Schievenin (BJF Project Coordinator), explains the difference between both terms and why this is so important!

In the case of a forest, we can say that planting trees or seeds is the fundamental step to bring a degraded area closer to its original state. A newly planted forest creates the ideal conditions that both prevent invasive species from taking over and encourage a diverse set of species to flourish in a degraded area, allowing the rebirth of ecosystem dynamics and services.

Therefore, conceptually speaking, it is correct to assume that the BJF, along with its technical partners, is developing a reforestation endeavour with ecological restoration purposes along the Araguaia Biodiversity Corridor, by planting the correct mix of indigenous trees and accelerate nature’s process of regeneration. Nevertheless, it is more complex than this, so keep reading for a better understanding of both terms!


Reforestation involves bringing back any forest that has been degraded. Nevertheless, this can be done without considering species composition or the functionality of the ecosystem. We could, for instance, reforest a region using only one species of tree, and would not have to try and restore the biome to what it once was.

Ecological restoration goes beyond this – accounting for the conservation of biodiversity, species composition, and the restoration of the degraded ecosystem to its original conditions as much as possible. The goal is to bring back the fauna and flora living in the region by bringing back their ways of sustaining themselves.

Therefore, even though it is possible to carry our ecological restoration through reforestation, reforestation does not have to encompass all the steps needed for ecological restoration.


Another important aspect to consider is that ecological restoration also involves restoring non-forest ecosystems – including savannas and grasslands. At the Black Jaguar Foundation, for example, we work with the restoration of the Amazon rainforest and the Cerrado, which is known for being the savanna with the greatest biodiversity in the world.

Ecological restoration is a lot more than planting trees. To conduct it, one needs in-depth knowledge of the biome’s native tree species, to enable a favourable environment for biodiversity to return.


Seeing the natural regeneration of native species and return of animals to our restoration sites is one of the best signs that our ecological restoration efforts are working.

It shows that we are restoring the conditions needed for life to exist in harmony in their natural habitat. Watch the vídeo below where our Field Coordinator, Carlos Eduardo Oliveira, further explains this restoration technique!

To carry out our ecological restoration activities efficiently and thoroughly, we developed the BJF Restoration Cycle, which consists of 17 different steps!

Your support has been crucial in all of this. Would you like to know more about how you can support the Araguaia Biodiversity Corridor?

Donate trees HERE or join the First 600 HERE!

Diamond Friends, Get Ready!

By News Home

After months of dedicated craftsmanship, award-winning sculptor Chris Tap did it again! He crafted another sculpture and donated it to the BJF. This third in his family of jaguar heads is life-size and is now part of the benefit package for BJF Diamond Friends. Thank you, Chris, for your incredible support to our foundation!

BJF Sponsor Partner: Actiforce

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Actiforce is a family-owned global business that provides exceptionally high-quality height adjustable desk frames for enhanced ergonomics. The company started in Holland, but ambition took them global!

CEO Jason de Weerd: “Aiming simply for more and more revenue. Is that all we’re going to pass on to the next generation? We really wanted to give something meaningful back to the world. That’s why we are proud to be part of the Black Jaguar Foundation.”

Watch the Actiforce video in English

Watch the Actiforce video in Portuguese

Watch the Actiforce video in German

BJF Team Member:
Guilherme Fleury

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Guilherme Fleury is a devoted BJF Team member in Brazil. With a rich background as an agronomist, he has lived in many states in Brazil and uses his experience in the field to work with our technical restoration partners. Gui is also a board member of BJF Brazil. Thank you, Guilherme, for your continuous energy and genuine care for nature!

BJF Team Member:
Ana Paula Aquino

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Meet Ana Paula Aquino, one of our new warm hearted BJF Team Members in Brazil. Ana Paula is known as the ‘Voice of Brazil’ and her famous voice represents leading brands in commercials. With extensive experience in dramatic arts in Brazil and New York, she is an expert in voice-overs and broadcasting productions. Ana Paula recently donated her talent to record the Brazilian version of our trailers and key video testimonials.

BJF Sponsor Partner:
Scelta Mushrooms

By News Home

At Scelta Mushrooms everything revolves around mushrooms. Based in the Netherlands, they process a wide range of high-quality mushroom products – from freshly frozen and preserved mushrooms with extended shelf life to healthier appetizers and natural taste enhancers – with exports to over 64 countries.

The raw materials from these products come directly from nature and Scelta is proud to contribute to restoring that same nature on a global scale as partner of the BJF.

“Our success would not be possible without mother nature and we hope our partnership with BJF will help others to decide to join this beautiful initiative.”