Private Conservation Area Campo Verde: preserving amazonian biodiversity in Ucayali

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The Private Conservation Area Campo Verde is located on private lands owned by the company Bosques Amazónicos (BAM) near the city of Pucallpa, the heart of the Peruvian Amazon. This natural reserve serves as a crucial refuge for conserving biodiversity in one of the regions most affected by deforestation and land-use change. Recognized and supported by the Ministry of the Environment (MINAM) for a four-decade term, this sanctuary of life is situated in the Manantay district, Coronel Portillo province, Ucayali department, and is part of the more than 20,000 hectares of private property protected by BAM.

Establishment date of Campo Verde Area

This area that serves as a wildlife refuge was officially established on September 27, 2022, thanks to the enactment of R.M. Nº 193-2022-MINAM. Covering an area of 8,049.87 hectares nestled in the Ucayali region, this conservation area is a true emblem of environmental commitment. It is not only Ucayali’s second private conservation area but also a key piece in the national conservation puzzle.

The fundamental purpose of the Campo Verde Private Conservation Area (PCA) is to conserve the mature Amazon rainforest and ensure its continued well-being. This delicate ecosystem is home to an astonishing diversity of wildlife, a wealth that must be protected to ensure the survival of the species that inhabit it. The aguajales ecosystems, in particular, receive special attention due to the high carbon concentration stored in the form of peat within the scope of the Campo Verde PCA. Moreover, the forests of Campo Verde are home to hundreds of species of plants and animals, many yet to be discovered by science; tangible proof of the biological abundance that exists in this natural paradise.

Aguaje: An ally against global warming

The term “aguajales” refers to humid forest ecosystems covered with extraordinary swampy vegetation, where the dominant plant is the aguaje palm tree. Its significance goes beyond culinary and commercial value, as its lifecycle contributes to maintaining the delicate balance of the Amazonian ecosystem.

One way in which aguaje helps combat global warming is through its ability to store carbon. Tropical forests are known as “carbon sinks” because they absorb and store large amounts of carbon dioxide, a greenhouse gas responsible for global warming. Aguaje, by growing in these forests, contributes to this process by accumulating carbon in its biomass. Furthermore, sustainable management practices and reforestation efforts that promote its cultivation can enhance the carbon storage capacity of the forests where it thrives.

Fotografía por: Mark Wust

Diversity of fauna

The skies of Campo Verde are populated by the wings of 228 bird species, accounting for 80% of the total avian species present in the entire Ucayali region. However, not all of these species enjoy the same level of security. The small and rare black-tailed antbird (Myrmoborus melanurus), a resident and highly uncommon species, faces a high level of danger, adding urgency to conservation efforts. This abundance makes Campo Verde a paradise for ornithologists and scientific researchers, as its avian diversity provides a vast field of study.

The forests of Campo Verde also serve as home to 20 mammal species, including the iconic tapir or sachavaca, whose vulnerable status calls for specialized attention. Furthermore, biodiversity does not stop there: 23 amphibian species and 19 reptile species have found refuge in this protected area.

Notable discoveries in Campo Verde

An exciting discovery in the jungles of Campo Verde took place during research conducted between 2021 and 2022 in the forests protected by BAM under the REDD+ The Last Habitat project. The Peruvian Institute of Herpetology and the Center for Ornithology and Biodiversity of Peru (CORBIDI) joined forces to unveil a new species of tree frog, named Scinax pyroinguinis, or “groins of fire frog.” This finding attests to the ongoing stream of surprises and secrets that the Amazonian forest still holds for research teams. You can read the full study about the discovery here.

Imminent natural disasters

However, Campo Verde’s strategic location places it in the zone of influence of a looming reality: forest fires. The expansion of agricultural frontiers in the region has increased the likelihood of suffering the effects of fires caused by farmers and ranchers, especially during the dry season. The area faces the challenge of safeguarding its precious biodiversity in an increasingly vulnerable environment.

In summary, the Campo Verde Private Conservation Area represents a valuable refuge for Amazonian biodiversity in the Ucayali department. Its dedication to preserving the mature rainforest and protecting emblematic species like the black-tailed antbird and the tapir, as well as its contributions to the advancement of ornithology and other scientific disciplines, solidify its importance in the landscape of Peruvian conservation. Despite the challenges, Campo Verde demonstrates that a passion for nature and a commitment to preservation can overcome obstacles on the path to a more sustainable future.

More about BAM

BAM’s Reforestation with Native Species in Campo Verde project has been validated at the highest level, Gold Standard, under the standards of the Climate, Community & Biodiversity Alliance (CCB), in recognition of its commitment to meeting the highest ecological and social standards. It’s worth noting that BAM’s program is the world’s first commercial reforestation program of native species to be certified under this prestigious standard.

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