Private Conservation Area “El Zapotal”

Image: Iván Gabaldón/PPY/Light Hawk

El Zapotal Conservation Area (ACEZ) is a private reserve, located in the northeast of the Yucatan Peninsula, whose objective is to contribute to the conservation and direct protection of the critical habitats it contains, as well as to minimize the threats that affect the enormous biological richness of the region, and contribute to its conservation.

Private Conservation Area El Zapotal and its Influence Zone.

With this Pronatura Peninsula of Yucatan A. C. contributes to the protection and conservation of critical areas of coastal wetlands and jungles that allow to maintain and increase the biodiversity and connectivity of the region, with particular emphasis on the conservation of water and the habitat of bird fauna and felines.

It is a case of private conservation in the State of Yucatan, with a surface of 4, 088.55 Has conformed by 4 polygons. It is located in the northeast of Tizimín municipality, neighboring NCPA Nuevo León ejidos (south); NCPA Santa María and NCPA El Limonar (east); NCPA Tekal Nuevo (to the north), NCPA El Nuevo Mundo (northwest), in the northern portion of the Ría Lagartos Biosphere Reserve (RBRL) and is located less than six kilometers from the Protected Area of ​​Flora and Fauna of Yum Balam (APFFYB).

It was recognized as “Area Destined Voluntarily for Conservation”, valid for “in perpetuity”, through the CONANP-29/2006 certificate. The first property lot was acquired in 2002, responding to a strategy to conserve representative and important habitat for birds, as well as to mitigate the strong pressure that the agricultural frontier exerts on the Ría Lagartos Biosphere Reserve (RBRL). Its purchase was achieved thanks to the support and alliance with the private organization The Nature Conservancy (TNC) and the Mexico Program of the Wetlands Conservation Act of North America (NAWCA).

Now, fifteen years later, El Zapotal fulfills its objective: to protect an important habitat for the 291 species of birds registered in the area and its area of ​​influence and other wildlife, as well as to strengthen the buffer zone of the RBRL. With this, we contribute to preserve priority ecosystems outside protected natural areas, under a scheme based on collaboration with neighboring ejidos and other partner organizations.