The Yabotí Biosphere Reserve is located in the Misiones province of northeastern Argentina. The reserve is part of the Misiones Rainforest Corridor, within the Amazon rainforest region, which is home to some of the most traditional villages of the Guaraní peoples.
Yabotí Biosphere Reserve
The Yabotí Biosphere Reserve is located in the Misiones province of northeastern Argentina. The reserve is part of the Misiones Rainforest Corridor within the Amazon Rainforest biogeographical region.
Yabotí is a subtropical forest conditioned by two main seasons: a tropical one, with intense summer rains; and a subtropical one, with less intense precipitations and cooler weather.
The Biosphere Reserve is also home to some of the most traditional villages of the Guaraní peoples who were the original occupants of a large part of Paraguay, Argentina and southern Brazil.
Currently, within the Biosphere Reserve limits, there are 17 Guaraní villages, one of them inside the core area of Esmeralda. They have been actively engaged in sustainable development initiatives promoted by the Biosphere Reserve’s Committee.
The Yabotí Biosphere Reserve constitutes a rich subtropical forest ecosystem, with a high diversity of species in the herbaceous, underwood and tree layers. It also contains riparian forests and numerous watercourses.
The major ecosystem type is tropical broad-leaf forest. Major habitats and land cover types include tropical broadleaf forest Eastern and Meridional Bazilian Sub-tropical forest. It is an important area for rehabilitating subtropical forests (after logging).
Its subtropical forests, with trees, bushes and bamboos are a habitat for jaguars, tapirs and collared peccaries, among other endangered species.
Even though some areas of the Biosphere Reserve have endured human-induced impacts in the past, it is currently undergoing a process of recovery, as demonstrated by the increasing presence of jaguars (Panthera onca), harpy eagles (Harpia harpyja) and tapirs (Tapirus terrestris), among other endangered species.
The Province of Misiones has approximately 800,000 inhabitants, engaged in agriculture ('mate', tea, fruit) and forestry. Some 3,500 Guaraní indigenous people live in the area in precarious conditions and with very limited possibilities to develop a sustainable economy in the endangered rain forests due to increasing logging activities.
The main objective of the biosphere reserve is the rational development of the forest resources by selective cutting in the transition area by local landowners, closely controlled by the Ministry of Ecology and Natural Resources.