Sierra Caral is a high priority site for the conservation of amphibians because this forested mountain range is home to five Critically Endangered, five Endangered, and two Vulnerable Species of Amphibians, of which four are endemic to these forests. Because of this unique amphibian diversity, Sierra Caral has been recently listed as an AZE Site (Alliance for Zero Extinctions Site).
This project is vital and urgent, because Sierra Caral is under enormous pressures. Between 2001 and 2009 over 3,800 hectares of forest disappeared, mainly because of the rapid expansion of cattle ranching in the region. Without SOS - Save Our SpeciesÂ´ support, these unique frogs and salamanders as well as their forests would likely disappear within the next few years!
With the support of SOS - Save Our Species, FUNDAECO will protect the largest contiguous forest habitat in Sierra Caral for the conservation of endemic and endangered amphibians, through the establishment and management of the first Amphibian Conservation Reserve in Guatemala, encompassing 2,299 hectares. The project will also support the establishment of a local base or support to amphibian conservation in Sierra Caral, through environmental education, outreach and community-based ecotourism in the newly established Amphibian Reserve.
Moreover, in order to foster the protection of forest located outside the new Reserve, we will launch an effort to protect additional tracts of Amphibian habitat in Sierra Caral through the establishment of community managed reserves in the surrounding region, and through the proposal of a new protected area for Guatemala.
There are three main project objectives. First, the protection of the largest contiguous forest remnant in Sierra Caral for the conservation of endemic and endangered amphibians, through the establishment and management of the first Amphibian Conservation Reserve in Guatemala.
Second, the establishment of a sustainable social base of support for amphibian conservation in Sierra Caral through environmental education, outreach and community-based ecotourism in the newly established Amphibian Reserve.
The third project objective is the launching of a landscape level effort for Amphibian habitat conservation in Sierra Caral, using the newly established Reserve as a territorial base for amphibian conservation work, and through the establishment of community managed reserves in high priority habitats in its surrounding region.