The communities of San Antonio and Calabaza are situated in the Colibri cloudforest in Peru’s ‘Selva Central’ region where the Andes mountain descends to meet the Amazon rainforest.
There are 30 families in the community of San Antonio and 20 families in the community of Calabaza.
Deforestation continues to be most significant threat to this region. Subsistence farming practiced by migrants from the Andean highlands; land use changes through the creation of pasturelands and illegal logging, all drive up the deforestation rates.
We have developed ecotourism businesses that are directed and managed by the communities, by providing capacity building training and the funding for infrastructure.
We are continuing to work with the communities, on improving the ecotourism businesses and develop new conservation activities that would generate sustainable sources of income for the local communities and lead to the direct conservation of the cloudforest and its biodiversity.
Since 2009, Rainforest Partnership has been the only non-profit organization working in the Colibri Cloudforest region with the neighboring communities of San Antonio and Calabaza. The communities are located in the Pampa Hermosa district, under the Satipo Province and fall under the Junín Region.
In the early years of the project, the two communities made an agreement with Rainforest Partnership to commit to the conservation of their cloudforest region and over the years have taken key in-roads in this direction. Their initial conservation efforts included prohibiting the collection of butterflies and orchids; hunting of birds and bears; extraction of wood, and the cutting and burning of forests for pasture.
Since then both the communities, with the help from Rainforest Partnership have been actively engaged in the development of their eco-tourism ventures including the construction of eco-hostels in San Antonio and Calabaza and improving their tour-guiding experience.
Currently, more than 300 tourists (domestic and international) visit these communities every year, boosting their economies. The positive impacts have also spurred the communities to take their own steps forward in creating a more sustainable and hygienic environment in their villages by improving their common community infrastructures and setting up regular recycling and trash collection services, thereby keeping the surrounding area in its best natural state. The project has helped in reinforcing the importance of cultural identity in the communities and is supporting the educational funding for children and young adults to a greater extent.
Together with our partners on-the-ground, we hope to expand upon the ecotourism project and establish a comprehensive forest protection to this cloudforest region.
Over the next 18 months, the 50 families in the communities of San Antonio and Calabaza will be able to make a basic income derived from the various conservation areas, including the sustainable economic activities allowed under all protection designations.
Conduct training workshops on ecotourism management and provide environmental education
Construct butterfly sanctuaries to preserve endemic and local species of butterflies and promote their production in a suitable environment
Host workshops on beekeeping to promote apiculture as an ecologically safe economic activity
Start work on the sustainable production of coffee in the community of San Antonio
Create Conservation Concession Areas in both the communities
Create a Regional Conservation Area in partnership with the Regional Government of Junín
Cloudforests like Colibri make up only 2.5% of the total area of the world’s tropical forests and yet they harbor a diverse set of rare, endemic and endangered flora and fauna.
Among fauna, diversity is high among the species of birds and butterflies. Bird species range from the Andean Cock-of-the-Rock (Rupicola peruvianus, the national bird of Peru) to other species including Hummingbirds, Tanagers, Toucanets, Quetzals, and IUCN Red-listed species such as the Royal cinclodes or Cinclodes aricomae, Red-faced parrot or Hapalopsittaca pyrrhops and Golden-plumed parakeet or Leptosittaca branickii.
Some of the rare species of butterflies in the BR include Ancyluris meliboeus, Enos falerina, Mimoides ariarathes, Parides erithalion, and Memphis leonida. The area also includes mammals such as the Spectacled Bear, Red howler Monkey, Red-faced Spider Monkey, Puma, Ocelot and Armadillo.