Puna de Atacama

Puna de Atacama

 

a high mountain zone consisting of inland tablelands and plateaus in the Central Andes of South America. The Puna de Atacama is located between 8° and 29° S lat., at an elevation of 3,500 to 4,600 m. Weakly undulating plains with depressions occupied by lakes (Lake Titicaca, Lake Poopó), ancient lake beds, swamps, and salt marshes predominate in the relief. In the southwest there are volcanic cones. In the north the tablelands are cut by deep river gorges; in the central and southern sections there are few streams and no drainage to the ocean.

The climate is high-mountain tropical, with cool rainy summers and cold dry winters. The average November temperature is 5°-10°C, and the average July temperature is -2° to 6°C. Annual precipitation reaches 1,000 mm in the north and less than 200 mm in the south. There are significant ranges in daily (to 20°–25°C) and extreme (to 40°–45°C) temperatures. Strong winds are common, and the weather is changeable.

The soils vary from high-mountain steppe soils to red-brown desert soils and, frequently, solonchak. The vegetation in the more humid northern, central, and eastern sections of the Puna is grassy steppe with individual xerophilous shrubs (jalca). The dry western section (between 14° and 20° S lat. and eastward) has desert vegetation (puna and tola). In the extreme south there is desert vegetation with sparse saltworts, and pulvinate plants are common.

The Puna is used for pasturing llamas, alpacas, mules, and sheep. The basins and valleys below 4,000 m are mostly under grain and potato cultivation.

E. N. LUKASHOVA

References in periodicals archive ?
Distribution and circulation of obsidian in Puna de Atacama (ca.
Cazadores-recolectores del Arcaico Tardio y desarrollo de complejidad social en la puna de Atacama: Las evidencias del sitio Tulan-52 (norte arido de Chile).
En publicaciones anteriores (Sanhueza 2001, 2008) abordamos preliminarmente este tema en relacion con comunidades indigenas de la puna de Atacama, enfocandolo por una parte, desde las adscripciones o pertenencias sociopoliticas que los dispositivos estatales (coloniales y republicanos) les adjudicaron, y por otra, desde los procesos y practicas sociales de produccion de identidades que surgieron desde la propia experiencia de estas colectividades historicas.
Los modelos evolucionistas (Ford 1985; Harris 1989, 1996; Smith 2001) defienden la idea de una gradiente continua no unilineal desde la explotacion de recursos silvestres a la agricultura intensiva y proveen una fructifera perspectiva para explorar la interaccion sociedad-planta en las sociedades formativas de la Puna de Atacama.
Provienen de los valles de Fiambala y de diversos lugares de la puna de Atacama, en el noroeste argentino (NOA) (Garrido 2000; Molina 2004).
En la Puna de Atacama se ha propuesto que durante el periodo comprendido entre 9.000-4.200 cal.
La continuidad del Programa se logro gracias a nuevas gestiones de Betty y los aportes de National Geographic Society que permitio la integracion de los colegas Martin Grosjean e Isabel Cartajena, con los que se profundizo el modelo interdisciplinario (sociedad-medioambiente) para la reconstruccion cultural y paleoambiental finipleistocenica y holocenica en las tierras medias y altas de la puna de Atacama (Meggers 1992).
Por otra parte, en los Andes circumpunenos se han identificado estas variaciones y su impacto en los grupos humanos localizados en la vertiente occidental de la puna de Atacama (Grosjean et al.
Among their topics are about the biopolitical character of the nature of life and death: considerations about Michel Foucault's political ontology, the threshold of nature: an approach through poetry, resilience as an interpretive key to the relationship between man and nature in the Middle Ages, taming nature: early modern variations on the human-animal relationship, and contested natures: cultural valuations of nature and environmental practices in the Puna de Atacama in northwestern Argentina.