- Recommendations derived from more than a decade of ecological research in the protected areas of La Amistad International Park were shared with SINAC officials.
December 8, 2023. In a workshop held on December 5, 2023, CATIE (Tropical Agricultural Research and Higher Education Center), through its Unit of Forests and Biodiversity in Productive Landscapes (UBBPP by its Spanish acronym), shared the results of a long-term ecological research on the mountain forests and moorlands of the Caribbean sector of La Amistad International Park.
This meeting, which took place at CATIE headquarters, was attended by officials from Costa Rica's National System of Conservation Areas (SINAC by its Spanish acronym), focusing on conservation areas such as Central (ACC) and Amistad-Caribbean (ACLAC).
The research, which began in 2012, has been a collaborative effort led by the UBBPP, with the support of the Latin American Chair of Ecology in Natural Forest Management and various partners, students and donors.
Its main objective is to understand the ecological characteristics of mountain forests and their sensitivity to climate change. To this end, a network of 29 permanent sample plots (PPM) has been established along an altitudinal gradient ranging from 400 masl to 2950 masl.
In 2022, the UBBPP extended its study to the moorlands, installing 24 additional PPMs to assess the response of tree regeneration to climate change. These plots cover an altitudinal gradient from 3050 masl to 3405 masl, from the tree line to the moorlands interior.
Mountain forests, which cover 25% of the earth's surface and provide drinking water to 50% of humanity, are crucial for water and climate regulation. UBBPP research is therefore vital for the conservation and sustainable management of these ecosystems.
During the workshop, a training plan for mountain forest managers in Protected Wildlife Areas and Biological Corridors, developed in a participatory manner in 2021, was also presented. This plan seeks to strengthen the knowledge and skills of technical staff to implement adaptive measures in response to climate change.
The event allowed not only to share research findings but also to discuss potential adaptive management measures and detail a follow-up plan to strengthen collaboration between CATIE and SINAC.
This joint effort aims to implement effective strategies for the adaptation of mountain and paramo forests in the face of climate change, ensuring the protection of the valuable ecosystem services they provide.
Forests and Biodiversity in Productive Landscapes Unit
Latin American Chair of Ecology in Natural Forest Management
Karla Salazar Leiva
Communications and Marketing Office