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      Biosphere Reserve Information



  General Description   The ‘Islas del Golfo de California’ Biosphere Reserve with its over 240 islands, is located between the rocky and arid peninsula of Baja California, the vast desert of Sonora and the abundant mangroves of Sinaloa. The rich and well-preserved Archipelago is an important area for bird’s reproduction refuges and as a corridor of migrating species. The area is rich in endemism and presents a great biologic and ecologic wealth of major economic importance for the country. It contains animal species such as ‘la iguana chukwalla’ (Sauromalus varius), ‘lobos marinos’ (Zalophus californianus) and ‘golondrinas marinas’ (Sterna elegans). Their origin is associated to tectonic and volcanic activities. Human population sourrounding the Gulf of California’s approximately 487,000 (1995) people, located mainly in ‘Guaymas’, ‘Mazatlan’, ‘La Paz’ and ‘San Felipe’. Some human activities have affected the insular ecosystems such as marine birds eggs and ‘guano’ extraction, fishing and tourism. More than 700 nomadic ‘Seris’ and ‘Konnak’ indigenous people (1995) live in Isla Tiburon and San Esteban engaged in fisheries, handicrafts and traditional knowledge and practices systems. As natural laboratories for scientific research, the main goal of the biosphere reserve is to preserve and restore natural ecosystems, and develop sustainable alternatives for local populations by regional planning processes, rural and marine integral development and territorial management.
  Major ecosystem type   Warm deserts and semi-deserts (Sonora desert); Marine archipelago of 124 major islands
  Major habitats & land cover types   Desert scrub; arid shrubland; tropical deciduous forest; coastal dune vegetation; sand dune systems; coastal mangroves
  Location   23°00' to 32°00' N; 106°00' to 115°00'W
  Area (hectares)    
  Total   150,000
  Core area(s)  
  Buffer zone(s)  
  Transition area(s) when given  
  Altitude (metres above sea level)   0 to +1,318
  Year designated   1995
  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: (646) 172 59 05 Fax: (646) 176 01 90 E-mail:
  Brief description   Quality of marine waters
Effects of contamination of water
Bird population studies
Fishery productivity
Analysis of sea lions population
Long-term monitoring on seabird nesting colonies
Impact of recreational activities
Marine and terrestrial flora and fauna inventories
Introduced species control and monitoring
Oceanographic research
Geology of the islands
Socioeconomic studies and coastal communities
Archeological and paleontological studies
  Specific variables...    
  Abiotic   Contaminants, geology, hydrology, physical oceanography/oceans.
  Biodiversity   Birds, coastal/marine, fauna, flora, island systems/islands, mammals, methodologies, population genetics/population dynamics, productivity, reintroduction.
  Socio-economic   Anthropological studies/Anthropology, archaeology/paleontology, fishery/fisheries, recreation, social/socio-economic aspects.
  Integrated monitoring   Impact and risk studies/Environmental impact.
  Contact address   Cecilia García Chavelas
Reserva de la Biosfera 'Islas del Golfo de California'
Calle del Puerto No. 375 interior 24 y 25, entre Av López Mateos y Tritones, Fraccionamiento Playa Ensenada
 Ensenada, B.C.
  Telephone   (52.646) 172 59 05
  Fax   (52.646) 176 01 90
  Web site
  Contact address   Ana Luisa Figueroa
Reserva de la biosfera 'Islas del Golfo de California'
Terminación Bahía de Bacochibampo S/N, Fraccionamiento Lomas de Cortés
85450 Guaymas, Sonora
  Telephone   (52.622) 221 03 00
(52.622) 221 04 00
  Fax   (52.622) 221 03 00
  Web site
  Contact address   Manuel Francisco Alvarez Alvarez
Reserva de la biosfera 'Islas del Golfo de California'
Isabel la Católica No. 250, entre Bravo y Ocampo, Col. Centro
23000 La Paz, B.C.S.
  Telephone   (52.112) 123 47 05
  Fax   (52.112) 123 47 05
  Web site
  Contact address   Carlos Ramón Godinez Reyes
Reserva de la biosfera 'Islas del Golfo de California'
Boulevard Adolfo López Mateos esq. Atanacio Carrillo s/n, Col. Centro
23880 Loreto, B.C.S.
  Telephone   (52.113) 135 04 77
(52.113) 135 14 22
  Fax   (52.113) 135 04 77
(52.113) 135 14 22
  Web site

Last updated: 08/03/2011

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