Project Partner

Fundación EcoMinga

Project Summary

Fundación EcoMinga owns and manages the reserves within the corridor, including the following funded with WLT support:

Cerro Candelaria, Rio Anzu, Rio Machay, and Rio Zuñac

In October 2015, WLT launched the Forests in the Sky appeal to fund the purchase of the Rio Machay reserve, finally forming a continuous biological corridor between Llanganates and Sangay National Parks.

The appeal target of £500,000 was reached in April 2016 thanks to generous donors, and WLT is aiming to help fund an expansion of Rio Machay to significantly widen the corridor.

WLT and Fundación EcoMinga are working together to protect standing forest and to reforest degraded agricultural land around the Cerro Candelaria Reserve. WLT has supported work at Cerro Candelaria through the Carbon Balanced programme.



Tropical and subtropical moist broadleaf forests


Eastern Cordillera Real montane forests


Cloud forest, but also páramo (tropical alpine grasslands)

Method for Land Protection

Land Purchase and Habitat Restoration



A wide range of mammals are found within the Llanganates-Sangay corridor, including Spectacled Bear, Mountain Tapir, Neotropical Otter, Puma and several species of monkey, such as White-fronted Capuchin, Woolly Monkey, Red Howler Monkey and Brown-headed Spider Monkey.

The area is home to the full range of eastern Andean birds including the Critically Endangered Black and Chestnut Eagle, Giant Antpitta, Crested and Golden-headed Quetzals, Andean Cock-of-the-Rock and both Black-billed and Gray-breasted Mountain Toucans.

A vast wealth of amphibian species can be found in the corridor, with many species new to science regularly discovered in the area.


The Llanganates-Sangay corridor is a rich centre for plant endemism, with over 190 plants found nowhere else on Earth. It is a unique location for orchids, including new species of the orchid genus Teagueia. It is home to other rare and poorly known orchid species including Platystele species (world’s smallest orchid) and new species of trees such as Blakea attenboroughi.


One of the most spectacular plant radiations in South America has been uncovered at Cerro Candelaria: an explosion of speciation in the Teagueia orchid genus. Originally only six species of this genus were known worldwide, however, 28 species new to science have been discovered on four neighbouring mountains in the Upper Pastaza Watershed. Within the reserve areas, 16 of these species have been found, growing at elevations ranging between 3,100 and 3,800 metres above sea level.

DNA analysis (from University of Florida-Gainsville, Kew Botanical Gardens and Ohio State University) shows that all these new species have evolved locally, and are not closely related to the previously known species in the genus. This species radiation is thought to be the densest and richest localised plant


Global Prioritization

The Llanganates Sangay Corridor is a large tract of virgin forest, which contains a unique diversity of endemic orchids and other endangered species. The corridor is situated within the transition zone between the Andes and the Amazon, located within the Upper Pastaza Watershed, in the province of Tungurahua, Ecuador.

The area covers a wide range of elevations from 1,800 to 3,860 metres above sea level, covered primarily by cloud forest, but also páramo (tropical alpine grasslands)

Environmental education at El Placer, a small community at the base of Cerro Candelaria

Local communities

The neighbouring community are strongly supportive of this project and some adjacent landowners have started planting ‘bird pastures’ (hillsides covered with trees for nectar feeding birds and fruit-eating tanagers) to attract birds, and also in order to show visitors the wildlife of the area.

The reserve falls within the Upper Pastaza Watershed, which is important for water security in the province of Tungurahua.


Llanganates Sangay - More Information