La Selle - Jaragua-Bahoruco-Enquirillo Transboundary Biosphere Reserve (Dominican Republic / Haiti)

© Dieufort Deslorges

This biosphere reserve includes the reserves of La Selle in Haiti, designated in 2012, and Jaragua-Bahoruco-Enriquillo in the Dominican Republic, designated in 2002. These two reserves represent ecological corridors divided by a political and administrative frontier. Bringing them together should allow for improved environmental management.

Designation date: 2017
Administrative authorities: Ministerio de Agricultura, Recursos Naturales y Desarrollo Rural (Dominican Republic); Ministère de l'Environnement (Haiti)
Surface area (terrestrial and marine): 608,816 ha
Core area(s): 12,000 ha
Buffer zone(s): 112,367 ha
Transition area(s): 484,449 ha

17°27'59"N - 18°42'15"N
Longitude: 71°14'36"W - 72°28'21"W

Ecological Characteristics

©Dieufort Deslorges

On the Haitian side, the biosphere reserve is located in the Massif de la Selle, containing Haiti’s highest peak 'Pic la Selle' (2684 m) and the second most biodiverse region of the country after the Massif de la Hotte. These two mountain ranges form the southern peninsula of the island of Hispaniola, known for its high level of endemism. Most of the endemic species are flowering plants of which 16% are endemic to this region.

The Dominican side includes three biogeographic regions in the Caribbean: the ‘Hoya del Lago Enriquillo’, the ‘Sierra de Bahoruco’ and the ‘Procurrente de Barahona’. It comprises a great variety of natural ecosystems, from tropical highlands to karstic terraces with coastal, marine, islands and cays with a rich biodiversity and an important regional endemism.

The area has a rich faunal diversity including species of pelicans (Pelecanus occidentalis) and manatee (Trichechus manatus). The ‘Isla Beata’ and ‘ los cayos Los Frailes’ have an enormous variety of marine birds, some 107 bird species, and 67 reptiles are reported all over the reserve.

From a geological point of view, the area has a wide variety of igneous and sedimentary rocks dating to the late Jurassic (140 million years).


Socio-Economic Characteristics

©Dieufort Deslorges
Coffee plants

Communities living within or near the area of the reserve, practice several economic activities related to agro-forestry, fisheries, tourism, recreation and leisure, and crafts. The reserve has important cultural, historical, political, social and religious values.

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Last updated in June 2017

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