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New conservation post inaugurated in Chiquibul Forest Reserve

Posted: Thursday, August 3, 2017. 8:27 a.m. CST.

By BBN Staff: On Monday, July 31, 2017, the Caballo Conservation Post became the 6th Conservation Post (C.P) in the Chiquibul Forest Reserve and was inaugurated by Minister of Environment,  Omar Figueroa and CEO in the Ministry of Defence, Felix Enriquez.

The Caballo Conservation Post was proposed by Friends for Conservation and Development (FCD) since 2013 with the intent of addressing an escalation of agricultural incursions on the northern region of the Chiquibul National Park.

The concept of C.P’s was developed in 2007 when FCD started to operate in the Chiquibul National Park. Due to the complexity of moving enforcement personnel into the depths of Chiquibul in an efficient manner, it was appropriate to develop a system of on-site presence to conduct daily and steady patrols.

The first C.P was established at Rio Blanco in 2008, followed by Tapir Camp C.P, then Ceibo Chico C.P in 2012.

In 2014, the Valentin C.P was established in the Caracol Archaeological Reserve and subsequently in July 2015 the Caracol C.P was opened at the epicentre of the archaeological site by NICH and the Institute of Archaeology.

These CP’s have proven to be successful in reducing further expansion of Guatemalan loggers, poachers and farmers. CP’s serve as a first intervention of control at the gateway, namely the western flank of the Chiquibul National Park.

However, it has not stopped entirely the Guatemalan impacts on the natural and cultural resources of the Chiquibul Forest.

In the Rio Blanco region, the forest has been recovering since 2008, while in Valentin, located in the Caracol region, the local people from La Rejoya have reduced much of their illegal activities. But other areas with human activity are popping up and these farmers and ranchers can only be controlled through a robust and constant patrol system.

The Caballo C.P was made possible through the Chiquibul Forest Investment Initiative whose finance was derived from the Protected Areas Conservation Trust and the Environmental Management Fund.

Controlling and preventing further expansion of the agricultural frontier into the Chiquibul Forest is also supported by the US Fish and Wildlife Service.

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