El Cóndor National Park (Ecuador) and Santiago-Comaina Reserved Zone (Peru)

El Cóndor National Park (Ecuador) and Santiago-Comaina Reserved Zone (Peru)

Tue, 05/16/2017 - 14:45
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El Cóndor National Park lies within a reserved zone between Peru and Ecuador. Though its borders actually fall within the borders of Ecuador, it is commonly combined with the Zone of Ecological Protection and the Santiago-Comaina Reserve Zone, both of which are in Peru, to form a mega-reserve of subsequent importance.

El Cóndor National Park lies within a reserved zone between Peru and Ecuador. Though its borders actually fall within the borders of Ecuador, it is commonly combined with the Zone of Ecological Protection (5,400 ha or 13,345 acres) and the Santiago-Comaina Reserve Zone (1,642,570 ha or 4,058,880 acres), both of which are in Peru, to form a mega-reserve of subsequent importance.

El Cóndor National Park is located in the Cordillera del Cóndor in Ecuador, bordering the Santiago-Comaina protected area, located in the Amazonas Region, Condorcanqui Province of Peru. It is a so-called 'Peace Park'.

The park falls into the Zamora Chinchipe (Peru) and Morona Santiago (Ecuador) provinces and is commonly viewed as being a national treasure for both Peruvians and Ecuadorians. It was established by both governments who decided that it would be beneficial to create a protected area here instead of continuing to argue over which country the area should belong to.

Recognizing the biological significance of the region and the potential of applying the parks for peace concept to foster further transboundary cooperation, the agreement of 1998 stated the need of establishing Adjacent Zones of Ecological Protection on both sides of the international border.

Following the signing of the agreement, the Government of Ecuador created in 1999 the El Cóndor National Park over 25.4 sq km (9.8 sq mi), while Peru established, across the border, a Zone of Ecological Protection of 54.4 sq km (21 sq mi). Complementarily, Peru established the Santiago-Comaina Reserved Zone over 8,632 sq km (3,333 sq mi); in July 2000 the reserve was expanded to its current 16,425 sq km (6,341 sq mi).

The area contains dense cloud forests, with an exceptionally rich biodiversity including several endemic species. The remoteness and, particularly from the Peruvian side, inaccessibility means that species under threat in other areas of the Amazon are still plentiful here.

Endangered species found in the region include a local subspecies of the long-haired spider monkey (Ateles belzebuth belzebuth) the spot-winged parrotlet (Touit stictoptera), white-chested swift (Cypseloides lemosi) and the golden-plumed conure (Leptosittaca branickii). The birds, Orange-throated Tanager Wetmorethraupis sterrhopteron and Traylor’s forest falcon (Micrastur buckleyi) are not only endangered but also endemic.