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      Biosphere Reserve Information



  General Description   Mapimí is located in the Durango State in northern Mexico between the Neotropical and neartic biogeographical region, in the ‘Bolson de Mapimí’ 1,150 meters above the sea level. It contains three core areas in the ‘Sierra de la Campana’, the ‘laguna de las Palomas’, a salted lagoon, and a desert habitat called ‘Dunas de la Soledad’. It comprises fragile warm desert and semi-desert ecosystems (particularly Chihuahuan desert), and the rich, highly adapted but vulnerable plants, mainly xerophytic matorral, and animal species as the puma (Puma concolor), venado bura (Odocoileus hemionus), the grullas (Grus canadensis) and the ‘zorrita del desierto’ 'Vulpes macrotis' along with scrubs and desert grasslands. 72,600 inhabitants (1997) live in the reserve, mainly engaged in extensive cattle raising, salt exploitation and in agriculture. Local population (ranchers and farmers) are involved in conservation and management efforts.The Institute of Ecology has supported the improved management of extensive cattle ranching with the introduction of Spanish breeds. Research activities with UNESCO/MAB and UNEP are engaged in local development activities, improved cattle ranching, agriculture, crafts and tourism. The main goals of the Biosphere Reserve is to conserve desert ecosystems and protect mammals and other endangered species optimising conditions for an economic sustainable reconstitution of degraded areas.
  Major ecosystem type   Warm deserts and semi-deserts
  Major habitats & land cover types   Scrubs and desert grassland; shrub communities; halophylus vegetation
  Location   26°29' to 26°52'N; 103°31' to 103°58'W
  Area (hectares)    
  Total   20,000
  Core area(s)  
  Buffer zone(s)  
  Transition area(s) when given  
  Altitude (metres above sea level)   +1,100 to +1,800
  Year designated   1977
  Administrative authorities   Comisión Nacional de Áreas Naturales Protegidas (CONANP); Secretaría de Medio Ambiente y Recursos Naturales (SEMARNAT) Camino al Ajusco 200, 3er piso, Jardines en la Montaña, Tlalpan, C.P. 14210, México, D.F. Tel: (618) 825 84 75 Fax: (618) 811 20 03 E-mail: Instituto de Ecología, A.C. This is a Federal Natural Protected Area. By an agreement, this Biosphere Reserve was transfered to the Institute of Ecology for its management.
  Brief description   Plant ecology studies on: Prosopis glandulosa, Atriplex spp., Pleuraphis mutica, Flourencia cernua and Opuntia spp.
Animal ecology studies on: Odocoileus hemionus, Gopherus flavomarginatus, Uma spp., Tayassu tajacu, Lepus californicus, Canis latrans, Bubo virginianus and Tyto alba
Effects of grazing on desert plant communities by cattle, rodents, lagomorphs and insects
Soils and hydrology
Rehabilitation of degradated rangelands
  Specific variables...    
  Abiotic   Hydrology, soil.
  Biodiversity   Arid/Semi-arid, degraded areas, ecology, fauna, invertebrates/insects/spiders, plants, restoration/rehabilitation/redevelopment, tropical grassland and savanna systems.
  Socio-economic   Livestock and related impacts/Overgrazing.
  Integrated monitoring   n.a.
  Contact address   Cristino Villareal Wislar
Director, Reserva de Biosfera Mapimí
Av. Juárez y Galeana s/n, Zona Centro, Palacio Federal, 2° piso Desp. 210-A, Torreón, Coahuila
27000 México
  Telephone   (52-1) 871 716 5511
(52-1) 871 716 5501
  Fax   (52-1) 871 716 5511
  Web site

Last updated: 08/03/2011

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