To Unesco home page

To sitemap

To MAB home page title2.gif (2287 bytes)
      Biosphere Reserve Information



  General Description   The reserve is located in the transition of the Nearctic and Neotropical realms and encompasses parts of the Sierra Madre del Sur, with a wide range of altitudes, climates and soils. The effects of tectonic and volcanic activities and erosion are notable within the reserve. Different types of forests are present in the reserve including mesophytic, cloud, and dry deciduous and semi-deciduous tropical forests. Anthropologists know the region as ‘Zona de Occidente’, an area notably different to the rest of Mesoamerica. Some ceramic remnants, figurines and graves have been found, but there is little other material evidence. More than 40,000 people (2002) live in the Sierra de Manantlán, engaged mainly in agriculture (corn, beans, tomatoes, sugarcane, watermelon, mangoes), livestock grazing, timber production, and extraction of wood for fuel and mining of coal or minerals. Their living conditions are poor and marginal. Being one of the forgotten groups in Jalisco, their land rights have been ignored by commercial timber companies and by local administrators. The biosphere reserve with its focus on people as an integral part of the ecosystem would appear well fitted to address the challenges of conserving wild relatives of important crops. An example is the wild maize (Zea diploperennis), discovered in the 1970’s that led to the biosphere reserve designation in 1988. Populations of the wild annual relative (Mays ssp. parviglumis) and the ‘Tabloncillo’ and ‘Reventador’ races of maize, traditional for this area, are further targets for conservation .The major goal of the reserve is to implement an alternative productive diversification of agrarian communities in ecotourism, sustainable forest management, agriculture and handicraft.
  Major ecosystem type   Tropical humid forest and temperate grasslands (sierra)
  Major habitats & land cover types   Deciduous tropical dry forest; semideciduous forest; cloud forest; riparian areas; pine and oak forests; fir forest; rivers; riparian vegetation; agriculture
  Location   19°20' to 19°43'N; 103°49' to 104°27'W
  Area (hectares)    
  Total   139,577
  Core area(s)   41,901
  Buffer zone(s)   97,676
  Transition area(s) when given  
  Altitude (metres above sea level)   +400 to +2,860
  Year designated   1988
  Administrative authorities   Comisión Nacional de Areas Naturales Protegidas (CONANP); Secretaría de Medio Ambiente, Recursos Naturales y Pesca (SEMARNAP) Camino al Ajusco 200, 3er piso, Jardines en la Montaña, Tlalpan, C.P. 14210, México, D.F. Tel. (317) 381 01 54, (317) 381 02 26 Fax: (317) 381 02 26 E-mail:;;
  Brief description   Water quality monitoring, diversity and species structure in Río Ayuquila
Flora and fauna inventories
Zea diploperennis population ecology and dynamics
Biodiversity conservation
Land use changes
Forest fires dynamics
Environmental education
  Specific variables...    
  Abiotic   Hydrology.
  Biodiversity   Biodiversity, conservation, ecology, fauna, fires/fire ecology, flora, forest systems, freshwater/inland water, genetic resources, species inventorying/inventory.
  Socio-economic   n.a.
  Integrated monitoring   Education and public awareness, land use/land cover.
  Contact address   Humberto Reyes Gómez
Reserva de Biosfera 'Sierra de Manantlán'
Ángel Martínez No. 84
48900 Autlán, Jalisco
  Telephone   (52.317) 381 01 54
(52.317) 381 02 26
  Fax   (52.317) 381 02 26
  Web site

Last updated: 08/03/2011

To topTo MAB home pageTo UNESCO