Saving threatened habitats worldwide

Greater protection for cloud forest nature reserve

12 September, 2012 - 14:28 -- World Land Trust
Cerro Prieto-Cerro La Luz Reserve

World Land Trust (WLT) helps extend the Cerro Prieto-Cerro La Luz Reserve in Mexico to help protect more of this threatened ecosystem

In May, WLT celebrated the creation of the 754 acre (305 hectare) Cerro Prieto-Cerro La Luz Reserve – helping to protect fragile cloud forest in Sierra Gorda’s vast wilderness that is home to Pumas, Jaguars and Black Bears.

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Just weeks later, Roberto Pedraza - from our local partner Grupo Ecológico Sierra Gorda (GESG) - discovered that land next to the reserve was now available for purchase and stepped in to save it for conservation.

Thanks to generous donations from our corporate supporter Travel Republic, WLT was able to act quickly and send funds to GESG so they could make this purchase possible, successfully extending the reserve by 124 acres (50 ha).

Jaguar photographed by camera-trap
Jaguar photographed by camera-trap

This Jaguar, believed to be a male, was snapped on camera-trap in the Sierra Gorda more than seven times © Roberto Pedraza Ruiz.

Why protect the Sierra Gorda region?

The Sierra Gorda region is one of the most diverse areas of the country, with Mexico being recognised as megadiverse; out of 170 countries in the world, only 12 harbour between 60 and 70 per cent of the total biodiversity of the planet – earning them the title of megadiverse.

Our partner GESG, a grassroots conservation organisation, protects over 946,000 acres (383,000 ha) within the Sierra Gorda. Yet much of the land within the Sierra Gorda Biosphere Reserve is privately owned and although GESG work with local communities to encourage sustainable management of their land, this habitat it is still threatened with deforestation.

Roberto explained: “Recently we went on horseback to the eastern portion of the new reserve, an area that is one of the wildest in the Sierra Gorda but sadly not safe from human pressure – loggers are always looking for new areas to plunder and they are already active not very far away.”

Buy an Acre success

Since last year, our conservation project in Mexico has been benefiting from donations to the Buy an Acre appeal and in this time WLT has successfully funded the creation of four nature reserves – saving 1,742 acres (705 ha) of threatened habitat.

The Buy an Acre appeal is also saving threatened habitat and wildlife in Colombia, Ecuador and Guatemala, regularly creating new nature reserves across four different countries. This shows that our supporters’ generosity really does make a huge difference – saving real acres, in real places.

More information

Watch a video interview with Roberto Pedraza about GESG's conservation project in the Sierra Gorda:

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