La Michilia

Michilía is located 75 km to the south of the town Durango in the Sierra de Michis, a branch of the Sierra Madre Occidental. The Sierra de Michis consists of igneous rock of the tertiary period. In the reserve, the topography is marked by a high degree of relief. There are several ephemeral streams and lagoons, besides the two permanent streams, Laurel to the west and Temascal to the southeast. There are also marshy meadows in the core area. Pine and Holm oak forests cover the greater part of the reserve.

Declaration date: 1977
Surface area: 9,421 ha
Administrative divisions: Municipalities of Suchil and Mezquital, State of Durango

Human Activities

Animal husbandry and agriculture.

Ecological Characteristics

The Biosphere Reserve is located in one of the branches of the Western Sierra Madre. Its physiographic limits are two mountain chains: the Sierra Michis and the Sierra Urica.

The area between these two Sierras has several plateaux and small hills, separated by valleys and canyons of varying depth. There are five types of vegetation in the Reserve: Conifer forest (Pinus, Quercus-Pinus, Pseudotsuga spp, Cupressus and Juniperus), Oak (Quercus) forest, grasslands, xerophyllus shrubland, and aquatic and subaquatic vegetation.

Its forests act as a catchment area for two basins that are important for the region’s agriculture. The Reserve hosts 770 species of vascular plants. The fauna in the reserve is predominantly of Nearctic origin with North American affinities. The Imperial Woodpecker (Campephilus imperialis) used to live in the area but is now extinct. The Mexican Gray Wolf (Canis lupus baileyii) and the American Black Bear (Ursus americanus) have been reintroduced in the Reserve.

Among the most important vertebrate species are the White-tailed Deer (Odocoileus virginianus), the Puma (Puma concolor), the Coyote (Canis latrans), the Wild turkey (Meleagris gallopavo), the Thick-billed Parrot (Rhynchopsitta pachyrhyncha) and the Golden Eagle (Aquila chrysaetos).


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                                                                                             Last update: July 2012

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