Natural Protected Areas in Baja California

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By Verónica Meza and Antonieta Valenzuela

In Baja California we can find terrestrial and marine natural areas with high biological richness and environmental value, these areas have different protection categories. Currently there are over 500 natural protected areas in Mexico that represent over 90 million hectares. This is part of the efforts of the federal government through the Commission of Natural Protected Areas, also known as Conanp. 

There are 20 natural protected areas in Baja California in the following categories:

  • 3 national parks.
  • 2 flora and fauna protection areas.
  • 4 biosphere reserves.
  • 11 areas voluntarily destined for conservation.
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Message From the Board President

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By Rosi Bustamante, President

Terra Peninsular was born from a love for the land: for plants, animals, landscapes, and living in harmony with each other. I know it sounds naïve, but dreaming is the first step to making them a reality.

I had the honor of growing up in Baja California, in Kumiai lands, in a family that loves the peninsula and the countryside, beaches and quails, traveling and exploring the unique charm that our great Baja California offers.

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How Many Nature Reserves Are in San Quintin?

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By Antonieta Valenzuela

Baja California is a unique place where you can find a variety of landscapes: sandy beaches, mountains, pine forests, wetlands, matorral, agaves, volcanoes and amazing sunsets. Due to urban growth, these natural areas are more vulnerable; the habitats of thousands of plants and animals are in danger of being destroyed.

Our mission is to protect natural areas, and one way to do it is through a certificate by the federal government known as Area Destined for Conservation.

In the region of San Quintin and El Rosario there are 4 nature reserves certified in this category:

  • Punta Mazo Nature Reserve.
  • Monte Ceniza Nature Reserve.
  • Valle Tranquilo Nature Reserve.
  • San Quintin Nature Reserve.
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Art exhibition: Travesía

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A glance into the natural world of San Quintin

For centuries art has been a tool that has helped us to know and understand the natural world. Before cameras existed, explorers and painters showed us the nature that surrounded them through drawings, painting and other disciplines.

The collective exhibition Travesia (journey in English) seeks to share the source of inspiration that nature provides. It’s part of the San Quintin Bird Festival and the Community Engagement program.

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Rest in Peace, Barbara Massey

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We greatly regret the departure of Barbara Massey, a very dear person who, with her passion for conservation and concern for theconservation of wetlands, supported the founding of nonprofits such as Pro Esteros and Terra Peninsular.

We send a big hug to her family and loved ones, her legacy will remain with us for many years to come.

Obituary published in the Mail Tribune in Medford, Oregon.

Rock Paintings in the Middle of Nowhere, Mexico

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By Pablo Arturo López Guijosa, Chasing World Heritage

Road Trips are fun. I have done many of the top rated road trips all around the world, including the Great Ocean Road, Jebel Hafeet, a World Heritage site in the United Arab Emirates, and Milford Road, New Zealand, also a World Heritage site.

But as a Mexican, one of the road trips that I have always wanted to do was the Baja Peninsula. In this little strip of land which seems to be separated from Mexico, you can find three World Heritage sites:

  • Whale Sanctuary of El Vizcaino
  • Islands and Protected Areas of the Gulf of California
  • Rock Paintings of the Sierra de San Francisco

Besides, it is right in front of another very important World Heritage site: 

I could write more than one article for each of these sites! However, I will focus on the Rock Paintings of the Sierra de San Francisco. But let’s go step by step.

Sierra de San Francisco from the road.
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Vote for Our Project: Plastic-free San Quintin

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We have been working for more than two decades to protect Baja California and one of the places where we focus our efforts is San Quintin Bay. 

This year we are participating in a contest of the European Outdoor Conservation Association, and if we win we will develop a project to reduce plastic pollution in the bay!

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What are Areas Destined for Conservation?

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By Jorge Luis Basave Castillo

This article was translated by Amairani Márquez and Manuel Eduardo Mendoza

Few doubt about the biocultural diversity of Mexico and the importance of urgently encouraging sustainable development. What is less known is that most of the natural resources of Mexico are on socially and privately owned lands, which requires a joint effort between society and government to build a viable future.

By 2019 Mexico managed to decree 11.13% of its land area as Natural Protected Areas. However, conserving territory under presidential decree is increasingly complicated and expensive. On the other hand, conservation from the beginning is a model that is more feasible because it is based on the will of people.

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Travel and Camp on Durable Surfaces

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In addition to planning your trip it’s important to know how to camp without leaving a trace and that is what the second of the seven Leave No Trace principles is about.

How to travel and camp without leaving a trace? Selecting an appropriate campsite is the most important aspect of a low-impact outing. Always remember that the right places to set up camp are found, not built.

Acampe sobre superficies durables
Photo by Mirna Borrego.

Remember that the principles are a guide to enjoy natural areas without damaging them and are very useful when you go for a walk on the beach, in the woods, when you go hiking or camping.

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Enjoy the Spring Without Leaving Trace

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By Mirna Borrego and Roberto Chino

Around February and March it’s normal to see that on the outskirts of the cities the slopes are painted in colors with the flowering of a great variety of species. The awakening of the wildflowers of previous years left us with great memories of colorful landscapes, and aroused in many people amazement and curiosity about the wild flora of our region.

In the last years we have had little rains, which makes us foresee that this season the flowering will not be as abundant as in previous seasons, as it happened in the 2019 super bloom. The spring time is approaching and nature is sometimes very unpredictable, the approaching rains may give us a very nice surprise. Meanwhile, get ready to enjoy nature, spring break is almost here and it’s during this season that we can leave an impact on nature.

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