New Important Bird Area declared!!
In 2012, the Quito Metropolitan District declared the area around the river Pachijal an “Area of conservation and sustainable land-use”. But the declaration itself doesn’t protect the forest remnants from deforestation. Therefore the district administration realizes monthly meetings in order to analyze the various conservation threats and to solve these problems hand in hand with the local people. We form part of the management board and participate in monthly workshops held in the different parts of the conservation area.
A sub-project we supported last year was the declaration of a new important bird area (IBA; program of BirdLife International) in Ecuador in order to support ecotourism as an alternative sustainable income. Especially the birding tourism is a very interesting opportunity for our region. The local foundation Aves y Conservación (BirdLife in Ecuador) organized several workshops to declare a new IBA around the conservation areas of Pachijal and Mashpi. We contributed valuable data from our monitoring work at the biological station and the area completed three of four possible criteria to get the status of an IBA.
Two weeks ago the new IBA Mashpi-Pachijal was officially declared in Quito. We form part of the Grupo de Apoyo Local, short GAL (Local Support Group), of the IBA Mashpi-Pachijal and so we were invited to receive the official recognition of BirdLife International. Members of the GAL exhibited products from our region and sold bio-cosmetics, fruits and coffee.
We hope that the status of a new IBA helps to promote the birding tourism and strengthens eco-touristic projects in our region in the future.