IUCN created a database of 100 species for restoring natural forests in Mexico and Central America

San José, Costa Rica, March 3, 2015. (UICN) With the objective of contributing to the landscape restoration in Mesoamerica, the Regional Office for Mexico, Central America and the Caribbean (ORMACC) of the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUNC), just released the list of Species for Restoration (www.especiesrestauracion-uicn.org).

This constitutes one of the most complete information databases on tree and shrub species, which exists in the Region.

There are 850 photographs currently on file of the 100 species of flora, from Mexico to Panama with the expectancy of having the database expand to 300 species for mid-2015. The database also includes a glossary of 453 illustrated botanical terms with 150 photographs.

 San José, Costa Rica, 03 de marzo 2015. (UICN) Con el objetivo de contribuir a la restauración del paisaje de Mesoamérica, la Oficina Regional para México, América Central y el Caribe (ORMACC) de la Unión Internacional para la Conservación de la Naturaleza (UICN), acaba de lanzar la lista de Especies para la Restauración (www.especiesrestauracion-uicn.org).

Esta constituye una de las bases de información sobre especies de árboles y arbustos de la región más completas existentes.

En ella se recopilan actualmente 850 fotografías de 100 especies de flora, desde México hasta Panamá, con la expectativa que crezca a 300 especies para mediados del 2015. Incluye también un glosario de 453 términos botánicos ilustrados con 150 fotografías

Diphysa americana

"The forest species database is a product of knowledge that proposes to make openly available silvicultural information to facilitate the investment in forest restoration of agricultural systems in the region,” explained the Coordinator of Forest Governance and Economy of ORMACC, German Obando.

The purpose of this database is to offer information on the particular characteristics of the flora species. This will help strengthen the investigation of these species, facilitating tools for their correct identification details the expert.

Species such as the Plumeria rubra L., known as frangipani, red-jasmine, common frangipani, temple tree, or simply plumeria, among other names, functions as a living fence, stabilizing slopes and even works for treating bronchitis and cholera. The Inga vera Willd, also known in our region as Jinicuile, Guava, Guabillo, Guajinicuil, Guama, white Guama, Pepeto, among other names, have been used as wood for construction, shadow for crops and as an astringent.

While there are many databases that included the taxonomy and photographs, this one goes beyond all that and has explanatory fact sheets on each one of the species with information on its natural history, geographic distribution, uses (industrial-ornamental, timber, medicinal, such as perfume or dye – and ecological – land stabilizers, sustenance for fauna -), on its germination and greenhouse management, taxonomy, as well as its common names (in the Indigenous languages such as Mayan, Miskito, Cabécar, Terraba, Bribri and Mayangna).

It also includes 15 species that are found on the IUCN Red List of Species, according to the threat categories (3 species in danger of extinction, 2 almost extinct, 3 vulnerable and 7 of lesser concern), 6 on Cites (Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora) and 25 are protected in the region by laws and decrees.

The species chosen to be part of this database were chosen considering their range of distribution, representation in various areas of life and their multipurpose uses (for example: that one species could be used for timer, forage, sustenance for fauna, etc.).

This product was financed by the DFID Governance, Forests and Markets Project and by RCCP (USAID´s Regional Climate Change Program)

On Landscape Restoration

Landscape restoration is an alternative for solving environmental problems and at the same time, achieving the recuperation of the production capacities of ecosystem goods and services in degraded areas.

The restoration approach seeks to develop an attractive and healthy landscape to replace what isn´t, trying to strengthen the resilience and the environmental functions. This consists in putting into practice a mosaic of techniques (agro-forestry and ecological) to strengthen the capacity of recuperation of the landscapes.

Landscape forest restoration goes beyond the restoration of forest cover per se. Its objective is to achieve a landscape that has valuable forests, from where, for example, timber can be extracted, they can be combined with other crops to increase the yield and protect the soil, improve the biodiversity of the habitats and increase the availability of goods for survival.

At a global level there is an initiative put in place of landscape restoration known as the Bonn Challenge, launched in September 2011 by the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN), the German Government and the Global Partnership for on Forest and Landscape Restoration, with the objective of establishing restoration commitments for at least 150 million hectares of degraded lands for 2020.

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