Pereyra Iraola Provincial Park and Biosphere Reserve is located along the banks of the Río de la Plata, in the northeastern part of Argentina's Buenos Aires Province. It is the province's largest urban park and richest center of biodiversity.
Pereyra Iraola Provincial Park and Biosphere Reserve
Pereyra Iraola Provincial Park is located between the municipalities of La Plata and Berazategui, along the banks of the Río de la Plata, in the northeastern part of Argentina's Buenos Aires Province. It is the province's largest urban park and richest center of biodiversity.
The land was originally owned by the Pereyra Iraola family. In 1949, the land was expropriated by the government headed by General Juan Perón in order to build a community park, which was opened a year later.
In 2007, the Park was designated as a Biosphere Reserve by UNESCO. It has a surface area of 10,248 ha (25,323 acres). Located in Argentina's largest vegetable producing area, family farming provides a living for the roughly 2,500 people that live within the Park and Reserve.
The Park and Reserve is the largest public space in Greater Buenos Aires, making it a convenient leisure site for more than 13 million people. It features activities such as hiking, cycling and bird watching.
In addition to its natural attributes, the property contains a valuable architectural heritage. For example, the stately Santa Rosa house (currently used for administration purposes) was one of the original estancias. Additional architectural elements that date from the founding era of La Plata remain.
As the last protected area of the original riverside ecosystem, it is home to Buenos Aires Province's greatest biological diversity. The area includes habitat for endangered bird species such as the burrito colorado, (Laterallus Leucopyrrhus). Furthermore, the area is also known for its medicinal plants and underground aquifers.
It is the home to hundreds of species that are unique to the region, particularly in terms of birds. Almost 70% of all avifauna existing in the Province can be found in the Reserve, with 288 species, including the endangered burrito colorado.
In terms of floristic biodiversity, the region is rich in different kinds of native trees, like the tala (Celtis tala), sauco (Sambucus australis) and espinillo (Acacia caven), as well as different kinds of ferns and grasslands.