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Basic data: The tropical dry forest of Nicaragua

The tropical dry forest on the Pacific coast of Central America is a unique and today a very rare forest biotope. Moist winds arrive from the east and empty themselves of rain in the mountains, which means that it is dry for nine months of the year here.


The dry forest is located in southwest Nicaragua in the Barranco Bayo ravine. There, the Grande de Carazo River flows through several ravines and is in the last two kilometres of its journey to the Pacific Ocean. The area is part of a finca and has hardly been farmed, meaning that a tropical dry forest was able to remain. Although it is in close proximity to the Pacific Ocean, it rarely rains here. Particular types of flora and fauna reside in this climate. Now we can buy this dry forest and, together with ADECA, preserve it permanently for nature.


The area to be purchased covers 140,000 square metres. 90% of this area is dry forest, 10% is former maize fields and should be replanted in the long-term.


Jaguarundi, Ocelot, Gray fox, Ornate Wood turtle, Iguana, Boa constrictor, Nine-banded Armadillo, Common Opossum, Orange-fronted Parakeet and the beautiful Turquoise-browed Motmot, the national bird of Nicaragua.


Various cacti and Acacias, Jiñocuabo (Bursera simaruba), Caoba (Swietenia humilis), Palo Brasil (Haematoxylum brasiletto), Roble (Tabebuia rosea), Ceibo (Ceiba pentandra).


Nicaragua forms a bottleneck, where biological diversity from North and South America meets. The dry forest biotope only occurs on the western American Pacific coast and contains a unique diversity of plant and animal species that are specific to this habitat. This area forms an island between the nature conservation areas “La Maquina” inland and “Chacocente” on the south Pacific, and is an important part of a biological corridor that enables the migration of species from the South to the North. The establishment of the reserve is also of benefit to the local population, as in the future ADECA would like to establish environmental education and ecotourism here.


For 20 years the local nature conservation and development organization ADECA, has been advocating the protection of natural diversity and environmental education. During this time ADECA established the first ecological museum of its kind in Central America, in order to make people more aware of the biological diversity of Central America and in particular the rare dry forest on the Pacific coast. ADECA will be the future owner of the area and will manage the dry forest in the long-term.

Management concept

Through the purchase of 140,000 square metres, we would like to preserve the forest permanently for nature. ADECA would like to replant damaged areas with indigenous trees. At the same time the bordering agricultural land should be integrated into the nature conservation concept and should be farmed organically. The area also holds a lot of importance for the local population as an educational institution and a place of exchange. In the long-term ADECA would like to open the area to ecotourism. We would also like to link the finca to other nature reserves. In addition the purchase of further areas and reforestation are under discussion.


The intensive use of the forests in the region has reduced the indigenous tropical dry forest to the small remaining area. Since the mid-20th century the region has been used above all for the cultivation of wool and as pastureland. Since 1980, sorghum, sesame and tobacco have been cultivated for export and other areas used for cattle. In particular deforestation, erosion and the practice of monoculture planting, have led to serious damage to the soil. Join us and help us to buy more land for nature! To our current project More about the tropical dry forestMore about the JaguarundiMore about the riparian forests of Nicaragua

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