LOCATION: Western Cordillera of Colombia
SIZE: 45,000 acres
KEY SPECIES: Yellow-eared Parrot and Fuertes's Parrot (Critically Endangered), Spectacled Bear (Vulnerable), Mountain Tapir (Endangered)
HABITAT: Cloud forest and páramo
THREATS: Cattle ranching and potato cultivation
ACTION: Acquire 7,448 acres
LOCAL PARTNERS: ProAves Colombia
FINANCIAL NEED: $148,000 for land purchase
Project Update: The land highlighted in this project has been purchased. Additional land will become available so donations are still being accepted.
In April 2009, WLT-US was presented with a unique opportunity to purchase critically endangered habitat, home to five endangered parrot species at imminent risk of extinction at the highly favorable price of $20 per acre. Recognizing the urgency and critical importance of this appeal, a new WLT-US donor--Frank Friedrich Kling from Illinois--committed to funding half the acquisition cost as part of a matching gift campaign. Thanks to the generous matching support offered by Frank Kling, many donors took up his great offer and by July, we had raised all of the funding required to purchase the most important properties totaling 7,448 acres. Our partner responded immediately and acquired the 7,448 acres of spectacular Andean habitat so that today the Yellow-eared Parrot and many other threatened species can fly freely in the knowledge that they have been saved. Thank you again for all your support.
WLT-US and its partner ProAves Colombia aim to acquire and protect 7,448 acres of spectacular highland cloud forest and páramo including a series of lakes that represents a crucial opportunity to save a unique ecosystem in Roncesvalles in the Central Andes of Colombia.
The area of Roncesvalles has been studied for eight years by ProAves, supported by Loro Parque Fundación, following the discovery of five parrot species at risk of extinction--the greatest concentration at one site on the planet. Parrots have long been recognized as excellent indicators of the biodiversity value and importance of an area. Roncesvalles is the stronghold for two of the rarest parrots in the Americas: the Indigo-winged Parrot with an estimated global population of just 200 individuals and 80% of all known breeding Yellow-eared Parrots.
Roncesvalles also holds an exceptional range of biodiversity and many other rare and endemic species, including the endangered Mountain Tapir and Spectacled Bear, both of which are regularly seen although too often killed by hunters. The area also contains populations of three endangered amphibians, including the North Andean Harlequin Frog.
This project is the result of years of surveys and monitoring by our partner. ProAves has documented the most important areas for conservation and found that the most threatened species, particularly the parrots, move over a large area in search of food. However, the rich volcanic soils of the Central Andes have resulted in the highest concentration of rural human populations in Colombia with the tragic consequence that less than 5% of the native forest here survives.
With your support we can safeguard the amazing biodiversity and cloud forest ecosystem of the Central Andes, forever.
Map of the Project Area
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