Jiquilisco Bay Conservation Area and Ramsar Site

FIAES, in conjunction with Ecoviva and the Mangrove Action Project, promotes the technique of ecological restoration with community participation in the southern region of the Bay.

Jiquilisco Bay is characterized by the large expanse of mangroves, which serve as protection for coastal communities and provide refuge for countless species of ecological and commercial significance.

Jiquilisco Bay is 55 kilometers long and reaches over approximately 63,000 hectares, of which half correspond to the mangrove. The rest of the bay is made up of estuaries and coastal lagoons, fed by the waters of the Lempa River, and San Miguel’s Grande River.

Many birds travel from North America to these wetlands, named a Ramsar Site on October 31, 2005, as an ecosystem of international importance.

In the area of mangroves, muddy water and muddy soil are a habitat for large schools of mollusks and crustaceans. This site is also home to one of the tallest and most lush mangrove trees in the country, the red mangrove, most common at the edges of estuaries.

The country has lost an estimated 60% of its mangrove forests; diverse factors have contributed to this loss, including shrimping, clear-cutting, erosion, and climate change. The destruction of these impressive forests is an issue of vital global importance, given their contribution to climate change adaptation.

Biodiversity

Colorado Mangrove (Rhizophora mangle)

Red Mangrove(Rhizophora racemosa),(Rhizophora harrisonii)

Giant Red Mangrove, Madresal(Avicennia germinans),Mangle Salado (Avicennia bicolor), Botoncillo(Conocarpus erecta), and Istaten(Laguncularia racemosa);the best samples of these kinds of vegetation are located in the eastern part of the Bay.

Ecosystem services

This Ramsar Wetland contributes to flood control, the cleansing and capture of water resources, fishing activities, wood production, aquifer recharge, carbon sequestration and climate regulation, protection and stabilization of the coastline, and scenic beauty.

Problems

Flooding in the northern area of the conservation result in human evacuation and tremendous economic loss during intense rains. In addition the area faces other multiple problems. One of these is the inadequate fishing practices impact the area—this is the only wetland where explosives are still used in fishing.

The expansion of agriculture and aquaculture in the natural mangrove as well as the extraction of mangrove resources. <br/> <br/> Rivers draining into the bay carry untreated waste water from surrounding communities, affecting the sanitary quality in the watershed in the zone of confluence.

1,079

environmental projects funded

314

project implementing organizations

25

years of fundraising and resourcing for conservation

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