Protected Areas Conservation Action Team Posts

Puerto Rico’s Protected Areas Map and Inventory Updated


SAN JUAN — The partnership of government agencies and non-governmental organizations known as the Protected Areas Conservation Action Team (PA-CAT) released today the 2016 update of the Protected Areas Inventory of Puerto Rico. The updated inventory includes eight new terrestrial protected areas from Para La Naturaleza and two from the Puerto Rico Department of Natural and Environmental Resources. In 2016, 1,076 hectares (2,659 acres) were added to the protected land inventory while a new marine extent added 6,490 hectares (16,036 acres) to the protected seas around Puerto Rico. These additions bring the amount of terrestrial protected areas to 16.1% and 26.7% for marine protected areas. Additionally, six area boundaries and changes in the attribute table for eight areas are included in this update. After the team updated the inventory, the Government of Puerto Rico declared the zone of Mar Chiquita in the municipality of Manatí a nature reserve; this new reserve will be included in the December 2017 update next year.

 

The December 2016 update of the Protected Areas Inventory of Puerto Rico includes eight new terrestrial protected areas from Para La Naturaleza and two from the Puerto Rico Department of Natural and Environmental Resources.

The December 2016 update of the Protected Areas Inventory of Puerto Rico includes eight new terrestrial protected areas from Para La Naturaleza and two from the Puerto Rico Department of Natural and Environmental Resources. Partners worked together to identify and compile updates of the protected areas of Puerto Rico from each agency’s database. This year, the U.S Forest Service International Institute of Tropical Forestry GIS Lab undertook the technical tasks to update the island’s inventory and create the map figures, while collaborating with personnel from the DNER Coastal Management Program and Para La Naturaleza to document the changes and identify issues between datasets (Cartography Credit: Maya Quiñones, U.S. Forest Service International Institute of Tropical Forestry).

 

The PA-CAT was formalized in 2015 and in December of that year the first collaborative protected areas inventory and map were released. The action team plans to release a new version each year in the month of December for use by multiple agencies, organizations, and the public. No single inventory or common terminology for the different protected area designations existed prior to 2015. Despite past efforts to develop a comprehensive inventory of protected areas for the island, individual agency inventories continued to evolve with little input and in isolation from each other.  By working together team members are moving towards a unified vision for protected areas in Puerto Rico. This vision should reduce the long recognized limitations in planning and monitoring of conservation effectiveness. These limitations result from the lack of standard terminology, guidelines or protocols combined with historical fragmentation and complexity of policies applied to the natural protected areas. The PA-CAT defines a Natural Protected Area as “a geographic area clearly defined and delimited through legal or other effective means for the long-term conservation of its natural resources, biodiversity, ecosystem services and associated cultural values.”  On April 19, 2016 the principal entities of the team signed a collaborative agreement to coordinate efforts to develop and manage information and to provide mechanisms and protection strategies for natural protected areas and cultural resources in public and private lands in Puerto Rico.


 

To view the map interactively or to access the data visit: CLCC Interactive Map http://caribbeanlcc.org/interactive-map/

To view the map interactively or to download the data visit:

CLCC Interactive Map in the Data Center or the Caribbean Conservation Planning Atlas.

Data can also be downloaded at the U.S. Forest Service International Institute of Tropical Forestry website.

 


DETAILED STATS

December 2016 Protected Areas Inventory 
164 total PAs (not counting legacy areas as individual PAs)
137 terrestrial
27 marine
3 small areas of overlap between PAs. In revision
9 zonas de amortiguamiento (not counted as PAs)
1076 ha (2659 acres) increase in terrestrial PA land from 2015 inventory
6490 ha (16036 acres) increase in marine PA extent from 2015 inventory
143590.09 ha (354818.85 acres) total land protected in 2016
361887.17 ha (894242.67 acres) total sea protected in 2016
16.1% 2016 % of terrestrial PAs
26.7% 2016 % of marine PAs

 

Changes between the 2015 and 2016 inventories

New Areas

Para La Naturaleza:

  1. 1. Área Natural Protegida Rio Bairoa
  2. Área Natural Protegida La Pitahaya
  3. Área Natural Protegida Los Llanos
  4. Área Natural Protegida Cerro La Tuna
  5. Área Natural Protegida Rio Toa Vaca
  6. Área Natural Protegida Hacienda Lago
  7. Área Natural Protegida Freddie Ramírez
  8. Área Natural Protegida Hacienda Pellejas

Puerto Rico Department of Natural and Environmental Resources:

  1. Reserva Natural Playa Grande El Paraíso—DRNA
  2. Ext. Marina R.N. Playa Larga El Paraíso—DRNA

Changes in the Boundaries

Para La Naturaleza

  1. Área Natural Protegida Medio Mundo y Daguao
  2. Área Natural Protegida Hacienda Buena Vista—absorbs Marueño
  3. Área Natural Protegida Río Encantado—overlap with the Karst Conservation Zone
  4. Área Natural Protegida Cañón San Cristóbal

Puerto Rico Department of Natural and Environmental Resources:

  1. Reserva Natural Planadas – Yeyesa—DRNA
  2. Finca Nolla—DRNA

Overlap Problems Corrected

  1. Área Natural Protegida Hacienda Pellejas—small overlap (2.4 ha) in the southern area with the Bosque del Pueblo in Adjuntas
  2. Planadas Yeyesa—small overlap (.04 ha) with Piedras del Collado

Changes in the Attributes

  1. Conservation Easement Reserva Natural Punta Ballenas—Designation: Bosque Estatal / Reserva Natural / Servidumbre de Conservación
  2. Name change to R.V.S. Iris Alameda de Boquerón – B.E.  de Boquerón
  3. Name change to Reserva Natural Cayo Ratones – B. E. de Boquerón
  4. Área Natural Protegida Marueño— changed to be part of Hacienda Buena Vista
  5. ANP Pedro Marrero changed name to ANP Río Sana Muerto
  6. Conservation Easement Don Ingenio changed name to ANP Río Toro Negro
  7. Name change to Guayama Research Area
  8. Name change to Manati Research Area
  9. Área Natural Protegida Finca Jájome—name change to Área Natural Protegida Jájome
  10. Área Natural Protegida Sendra—name change to Área Natural Protegida Hermanas Sendra
  11. Finca Los Frailes—name change to Área Natural Protegida Los Frailes
  12. Finca Shapiro—name change to Área Natural Protegida Shapiro
  13. Área Natural Protegida Río Toa Vaca—name change to Área Natural Protegida Toa Vaca

Additions to the Puerto Rico Protected Areas Inventory shown in dark green for terrestrial areas and dark blue for marine extents.

Additions to the Puerto Rico Protected Areas Inventory shown in dark green for terrestrial areas and dark blue for marine extents.


The Protected Areas Conservation Action Team (PA-CAT) is composed of multiple partners, including Federal and State agencies, non-governmental organizations and individuals from Puerto Rico and the United States Virgin Islands. These include, among others,  the Puerto Rico Department of Natural and Environmental Resources (DNER), Virgin Islands Department of Planning and Natural Resources (DPNR),  International Institute of Tropical Forestry (IITF) of the United States Forest Service (USFS), U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS), Puerto Rico Conservation Trust and its unit Para La Naturaleza,  Foundation Alma de Bahía, Bahía Beach Resort, Puerto Rico Planning Board, Foundation for Development Planning, Inc., University of the Virgin Islands, and the University of Puerto Rico. These agencies and organizations work together in an alliance called the Caribbean Landscape Conservation Cooperative.