Your Donation Will Support the Following:
- Expansion of the El Pangán Reserve and installation of a substantial gated entrance with official signage to deter illegal logging
- One year’s salary for a new forest guardian who will increase surveillance and protect the El Pangán Reserve
- Purchase of vital supplies to support the new forest guard’s work, like gasoline, signs, and tools
During the Covid-19 pandemic, illegal logging on protected lands in Colombia has been on the rise. Every day, two semi-size trucks full of illegally harvested timber are being hauled out of El Pangán Reserve in western Colombia, decimating the habitat of birds like the Vulnerable Long-Wattled Umbrella bird, or Pangán, for which the reserve is named. Protected since 2002, this lush rainforest ecosystem is an important biodiversity hotspot and is home to an astonishing 49 species of birds found only in the Colombian Chocó, as well as 21 species of threatened amphibians, like the blue morph of the Diablito frog.
Loggers are targeting El Pangán specifically to extract the Vulnerable Chanul trees found in the reserve. These massive trees are endemic to the Chocó region and their incredibly hard wood makes them very valuable for export, but over-exploitation makes their future, and the future of the species that depend upon them, uncertain.
This past summer, Women for Conservation partnered with ProAves to revitalize conservation efforts in this region through the renovation of a local community gathering space, the El Pangán EcoCenter. The EcoCenter teaches local citizens how to identify the many birds that depend on the reserve and encourages environmental stewardship. However, illegal logging is now leaving a swathe of destroyed habitat in its wake, imperiling the species that depend on the forest and robbing the local community of their valuable natural resources and heritage.
Using a pulley system stretching far into the forest, timber is illegally extracted and processed before leaving
the reserve on large trucks.
Women for Conservation is taking action and urgently needs your help to sponsor a new forest guard to prevent destruction of the rainforest and maintain the integrity of the reserve. Funding a new forest guard will help eliminate the imminent threat of continued illegal logging by increasing patrolling and surveillance in the conservation area. Because loggers are currently accessing El Pangán Reserve off of a main road through neighboring forestland, we seek to purchase this strategic piece of rainforest to block their passage and protect the entrance with a large gate and official signage.
Reaching the donation goal for this campaign will immediately fund a new forest guard to protect El Pangán Reserve for a full year, expand the reserve, and help us purchase vital supplies, directly impacting the conservation of this richly biodiverse forest and the survival of endangered species.
Click here to learn more about the critical role forest guards play in conservation throughout Colombia.
At left: Current forest guards survey the damage left behind from the processing of illegally harvested timber.