SUSTAINABLE FOREST FOR EDUCATION AND CONSERVATION IN SOUTHEASTERN PERU
LUZ M. MELENDEZ RESERVE
This forest land is the training center and laboratory for learning about nature and wildlife.
Sharing is our commitment.
Since 2012 we have made wildlife surveys covering Luz M. Melendez Preserve and the surroundings, listing 239 species of birds and 22 species of large and small mammals, currently we are working on surveying the plants, insects, and butterflies.
The preserve land is vulnerable to various threats to which they are subject. The major threats are uncontrolled agriculture and land grabs, gold mining, illegal logging, excessive extraction of other natural resources (bushmeat, fish, fruit and palm leaves, etc.), paving the road Cusco – Puerto Maldonado and increased migration to the region to increase pressure and threats on the protected area processes.
Hope a lot more is coming. We want to build a capable field center, with 6 rooms, 1 kitchen, 4 restrooms, a library, and a conference room. We want to help to develop more birding groups in Madre de Dios and in the rest of Perú and Bolivia. We want to keep developing more nature trips for genuine ecotourism. We believe ecotourism is key to conservation. We want to expose our participants to opportunities to see many more birds. We want to encourage people to participate as ambassadors of national parks, preserves, concessions, and private protected forest for conservation. We want to look for more economic resources to buy more land for conservation, and at the moment we have the offer of the land in the neighbor, 38 hectares of land next to Marina Reserve and we seek $20.000 dollars to buy it.
Luz M. Melendez Preserve is a rainforest land of 65 acres (25 hectares), of protected forest, situated along the large Madre de Dios River about 30 minutes by boat from Puerto Maldonado City. The habitat includes a primary floodplain forest, river succession or riverine forest, sandbanks, ponds, and forest gaps. Luz M. Melendez Preserve is seasonally flooded, it has rich soils due to annual sediment deposits from river floods. The land is often wanted for agriculture and therefore is amongst the most threatened in the area.
This piece of rainforest land is in the stages of succession, with Kapok trees, Ironwood trees, wild garlic trees, palm trees, and fig trees, and Cecropia trees. This forest also frequently have terraces, one or meters higher than others, which represent historical floods.
The forest and vegetation on each terrace are in a different stage of succession and of different age, then the others. To the untrained eye, this is unnoticeable, but to a botanist, it is like moving from one neighborhood to another in a large city.
- Implementation of Gardens for hummingbirds in Tambopata.
- Environmental Education in the Luz Marina Meléndez Reserve and the Collpa la Cachuela.
- Biological Monitoring of Mammals Through Trap Chambers in the Luz Marina Melendez Reserve.
- Evaluation of the tourism potential and inventory in the Luz Marina Melendez Reserve.
To participate in our projects more information here:
Research Coordinator: Ruth Caviedes.