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Areas that comprise “damping zones” are important in minimizing the effects of impacts on the environment as they
can affect the conservation unit, and in helping to maintain its natural resources. However, they are not protected and many are handled improperly, compromising the sustainability of the conservation units they should protect. The aim of this study was to evaluate the effect of human disturbance in the damping zone on the soil quality inside the Biological Reserve Serra dos Toledos, Itajubá-MG. For this, there were selected three areas under different activities in the damping zone (pasture, agriculture, and native forest) and three areas sided to those, within the Reserve. They were characterized according to various physical, chemical, microbiological, and visual soil quality procedures. Areas that had the worst physical, visual, and microbiological conditions were those located in the damping zone under agriculture and pasture. The microbiological attributes were sensitive to the different areas, due to the direct relation between negative impact of agriculture practiced in the damping zone and the soil quality within the Biological Reserve studied.