Solentiname Islands: Solentiname Islands National Monument (Nicaragua)

Solentiname Islands: Solentiname Islands National Monument (Nicaragua)

Tue, 07/30/2019 - 16:21

The Solentiname Islands are an archipelago located in the southeastern part of Lake Nicaragua. They comprise four larger islands: Mancarroncito, Mancarrón, San Fernando, and La Venada. Along with some 32 smaller islands with rocky headlands, they afford shelter to numerous aquatic birds.

Solentiname Islands

The Solentiname Islands (Archipelago de Islas Solentiname) are located in the southeastern corner of Lake Nicaragua (Cocibolca), the largest lake in Central America. They are located in the Nicaraguan department of Río San Juan.

The archipelago comprises four larger islands: Mancarroncito, Mancarrón, San Fernando, and La Venada. Along with some 32 smaller islands with rocky headlands, they afford shelter to numerous aquatic birds.

The islands are also home to various colorful land-based bird species, including parrots and toucans, totaling about 76 species. In addition, the waters are home to at least 46 fish species, including tarpon, freshwater sharks, sawfish, and swordfish.

Solentiname Islands National Monument

The Solentiname Islands National Monument constitutes one of the 78 protected areas of Nicaragua. The islands are a haven for hikers, bird watchers and art lovers.

The islands are volcanic in origin. The archipelago's highest point is Mancarrón at 257 m (843 ft) above sea level. The islands are covered in tropical tree species, transitional between wet and dry tropical.

The waters contain about 46 fish species, including tarpon, freshwater sharks, sawfish, and swordfish. The island of La Venada is known for its deer and named after them (La Venada is Spanish for "The Doe").

The annual rainfall in the islands measures between 1,400 - 1,800 mm (55 - 70 in), with most falling between May and December. Solentiname's mean yearly temperature is 26 °C (78.8 °F).

The archipelago's population is less than 1,000, and its land area is about 38 sq km (15 sq mi). As a result, modern amenities, including electricity and running water, are rare on the islands. Agricultural products include avocado, cotton, sesame, corn, coffee and cacao.

The Solentiname Islands have been the object of ecotourism in recent years and contain several archaeological sites ((including petroglyphs on the island of San Fernando).

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