On September 25th 2019, the annual Workshop of the Regional Group for the Monitoring of bodies of water and associated wildlife in the Selva Maya (MASM), was held in Flores, Guatemala with the objective to use the standardized monitoring of bodies of water and associated wildlife as an indicator of the state of conservation of biodiversity and climate change in the region, and then generate recommendations for management and conservation to decision makers.
During the workshop, experiencesof those who work in the Selva Maya, shared by Guatemala, Mexico and Belize were presented; recommendations for management and conservation of bodies of water in the region were also discussed. Derived from the discussions, it was concluded that between 2018 and 2019 the gouaches have presented a critical situation, registering that more than 90% of them remain dry compared to other years. This coincides with an increase in the number of animals found dead in the region (i.e. tapir and white-lipped peccary).
On the other hand, warnings about the threats generated by the reduction of water and humidity in the Selva Maya were given; among them, the increase in fires caused by agricultural and illegal activities, the increase in conflicts between wild animals and humans, and the decrease in income from sustainable activities, such as ecotourism, beekeeping, agroforestry, among others.
The support for the formation of this Regional Group, as well as for the execution of some training and annual meetings, are part of one of the project’s lines of work Support for the monitoring of biodiversity and climate change in the Selva Maya, of the German Cooperation for Sustainable Development (GIZ).
Contact: Gabriela Ponce gponce[at]wcs.org