STS091-708-014 Rio Paraguai, Mato Grosso State, Brazil June 1998
The Rio Paraguai (top of picture) is part of a very large wetland ecosystem that exhibits a remarkable biodiversity known as the Pantanal. The Pantanal is located in west central Brazil and eastern Bolivia. This vast expanse of poorly drained wetlands experiences annual inundation. The terrain west of the river is flat savanna and wetlands; while east of the river a series of low, parallel, folded ridgelines are visible. The lighter colored landscape with angular-looking field patterns appears to be used for a variety of agricultural purposes, including crop production and cattle ranching. Mining activities and timber operations also contribute to the economy in this region that is faced with serious environmental issues. The city of Caceres can be identified along the east bank of the Rio Paraguai near the upper right corner of the picture. An airport runway (short, light colored, straight line) is visible northeast of Caceres. The roughly oval-shaped feature (dark area) in the southeast quadrant appears to be a lake.

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