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New 3 Million Acre Protected Reserve in Ecuador

Ecuador this month recognized a new reserve in the Amazon rainforest in hopes of protecting Indigenous land from threats like mining and livestock.

Ecuador’s Palora River
Ecuador’s Palora River | Nature and Culture

Now that Lula, the new Brazilian president is successfully tackling deforestation, there's more good news for the Amazon with Ecuador's latests initiative.

The country's new Tarímiat Pujutaí Nuṉka Reserve covers 1,237,395 hectares (3,057,671 acres) of Andean and Amazonian forests in the Morona Santiago province of eastern Ecuador, where numerous Indigenous communities have for years been fending off numerous drivers of deforestation. And, better yet, a recent study found that the world's healthiest, most biodiverse, and most resilient forests are found in Indigenous protected areas.

“This is an initiative that will not only allow us to preserve, but also enjoy our forests and climate, to offer the world a healthy environment,” said Governor of Morona Santiago, Rafael Antuni.

The area is home to cloud forests, sandstone plateaus, Amazonian lowlands and floodplain forests, among other ecosystems. They contain over a thousand species of birds - dozens of them endemic to the region - as well as large mammals like jaguars, tapirs and spectacled bears.

The reserve is intended to act as a corridor for these species because it’s connected to other protected areas in eastern Ecuador and northern Peru, according to the Andes Amazon Fund.



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