Barba Azul Nature Reserve is located in the heart of the Beni Savanna in northwest Bolivia (Santa Ana de Yacuma Municipality, Yacuma Province, Beni Department), on former ranch land. Although the reserve was originally created in 2008 to protect one of the largest remaining populations of the critically endangered Blue-throated Macaw (known locally as “Barba Azul”), its grassland habitats also are vital to migratory shorebirds—especially Buff-breasted Sandpiper (Tryngites subruficollis). More than 1% of this species’ global population rests and “refuels” at the reserve on southbound migration during the boreal fall.
The 10,930-hectare (27,000-acre) reserve is owned and managed by Asociación Armonía, a nongovernmental, conservation organization in Bolivia. The reserve’s tropical grassland habitats, including Motacu palm islands, have been recovering rapidly from prior over-grazing and yearly burning. Asociación Armonía has made maintaining quality grasslands for shorebirds, particularly Buff-breasted Sandpipers, a high management priority within Barba Azul Nature Reserve,”
Barba Azul Nature Reserve is part of the “Oeste de Rio Mamore” Important Bird Area and lies within the nearly 7-million-hectare “Bolivian Llanos de Moxos” Ramsar site.
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Ecology & Conservation