Reserva Biologica Cerro Seco is a unique ecosystem found just outside of Bahia de Caraquez.
The following information is taken from the Cerro Seco site. The dry forest is an exceptional ecosystem. It is an area of biological diversity and is home to over 400 species of birds and 150 species of mammals including the jaguar. More than 40 birds live within the ecosystem. One of every five types found here are unique to this ecosystem. The dry forest is important to its inhabitants for the provision of water for human consumption and productive activities, as well as the provision of raw materials for production processes such as elaboration of handicrafts toquilla straw or tagua.
On the Reserve there are also spaces for recreational use for tourism development. Efforts have been made to protect against risks of landslides or flooding. These forests have been occupied, used, and preserved continuously for more than 8,000 years. Despite its great importance, the dry forest is one of the world’s most threatened ecosystems.
The main pressures threatening the ecosystem are the expansion of the agricultural frontier, urban expansion, extraction of timber, hunting, forest fires, among others. In Ecuador, we find dry forests in the southwest of the province of Loja and Santa Elena, Guayas and Manabi provinces. More than 200,000 people, many with levels of extreme poverty, live in or depend on the resources of these forests.
The Cerro Seco biological reserve offers guided walks from the eco city Bahia de Caraquez to the reserve. Tours are offered in Spanish, English and German.
Tours that are offered through Cerro Seco include:
Historical Tours of Bahia de Caraquez:
Discover the history and culture of Bahia de Caraquez, its magic and its natural charm. Walking in the streets of the ancient and modern city you can live, learn, enjoy and appreciate the beauty of the Cultural heritage. Dive into legends and traditional stories of our Cultural Heritage.
Whale Watching Tours:
Humpback whale watching (June – September / day trip). The humpback whale is an acrobatic animal who often jumps out of the water and dramatically falls back into the water. It is quite a majestic sight! Tours are arranged for a minimum of 10 people/by reservation only. Tours include: Guide (Spanish), (You can arrange to bring your own guide to interpret for you). The guide provides interpretation and observation of whales and other marine animals. Transportation to the port where the tour begins is not included, however, it can be arranged for you at an extra cost. Suggested items to bring along: Repellent, hat, camera, water, sunscreen, energy and desire to know and experience the magic of humpback whales.
Day and Night Tours of the Forest:
Enjoy a tour of the forest with a guide. You can see unique and endemic flora, including two species of ceibo, algarrobo, palo santo, guayacán, realillo, muyuyo, sebastian, bototillo, cascol, moral fine, dry, tree jaile coca, cactus candelabra, guzmania, orchids, bromeliads and much more… There are 72 species of birds that have been recorded in the Reserve, as well as an estimated 23 species of mammals, 20 species of reptiles, and 4 species of amphibians among others.
The Reserve also offers Volunteer Opportunities
Volunteering at Cerro Seco biological reserve is a great experience for all involved. Each volunteer is part of something special here in the reserve. Each volunteer is full of experiences, knowledge and different views that allow us to improve our projects, or give them a major change. To change our knowledge and experience, we offer volunteers an Exchange with the community – the language, the culture, the history.
In 1996, Cerro Seco reserve started a volunteer program to satisfy the requests of people around the world who wanted to live and work within the reserve. Since then, the volunteer program has not only benefited our reservation, but has enriched the lives of many people in the process. The volunteers have had an important role in much of our work, especially the efforts of community development and with our neighborhood school. These are just some of the many initiatives that have been influenced and supported by volunteers.
Have we aroused your interest? Here you find more information about volunteer / internship in the reserve biological Cerro Seco – information.
Reserva Biológica Cerro Seco
Bahía de Caráquez
Cordillera del Bálsamo
Manabí – Ecuador
00593 (0)52 693 005
Email Michaela Maissen, she speaks English and Spanish