At El Dorado Bird Reserve, beauty is anything but subtle and the bird life anything but common. Situated on the slopes of the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta mountains in northern Colombia, this area is one of the most important locations in the Americas for biodiversity found nowhere else.
El Dorado Bird Reserve, established in 2010, totals more than 2,000 acres of critically important bird habitat. It is a refuge for the endangered Santa Marta Parakeet and another 18 endangered bird species, including the Santa Marta Warbler and the yet-to-be-described Santa Marta Screech-Owl. It also protects five threatened amphibians.
The reserve is a vital stopover point for migratory birds that breed in the United States and Canada. Among other birds, the Cerulean Warbler, Golden-winged Warbler, Rose-breasted Grosbeak, and Swainson’s Thrush can be found wintering here.
Declared an Alliance for Zero Extinction site in 2005, the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta is ranked as the second-most important site for threatened birds and amphibians in the world. Tragically, only 15 percent of the Sierra Nevada’s original vegetation remains following decades of colonization and agricultural expansion.
In 2006 we assisted our Colombian partner, Fundación ProAves, in establishing the El Dorado reserve.
Strategically located at 1,900 meters beside the main access road to the area is the beautiful El Dorado ecolodge owned and managed by ProAves. The lodge is an exceptional place to bird, relax, and enjoy the spectacular views of the glacier-covered peaks of the Sierra Nevada and Caribbean beaches down below. Revenue earned from tourism is re-invested back into the management of the reserve.
Deforestation in the region continues to reduce the amount of montane forest available to birds and other wildlife. We are actively pursuing opportunities to further expand the reserve and support its management.
You can help: By making a donation to ProAves through ABC you are helping us, and ProAves, protect this special place: Donate.
Fundación ProAves is the leading organization in protection of birds and their habitats in Colombia. ProAves works to prevent the extinction of birds through protection of key habitats, working with institutions, communities, and governments. The organization promotes activities that work toward the conservation of natural ecosystems. Learn more.