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Location Panama, Bocas del Toro,Chiriquí
Central coordinates 82o 40.00' West  9o 6.00' North
IBA criteria A1, A2, A3
Area 207,000 ha
Altitude 90 - 3,335m
Year of IBA assessment 2007

Sociedad Audubon de Panamá



Site description Rising from near sea level to over 3,300 m, the enormous wilderness area of La Amistad International Park contains the highest number of endangered and endemic birds of any IBA in Panama. Extending from the Costa Rican border in the drainage of the Yorkin River, in Bocas del Toro the park includes the headwaters of the Changuinola River and its Teribe, Culubre and Changuena tributaries. On the Pacific slope in Chiriquí, the park boundary follows the 2,000 (above Santa Clara), 2,200 (above Cerro Punta) and 1,800 m contours (above Boquete). The lowest point in the park is at Boca Chica (90 m) in the Changuinola Valley, while Cerro Fabrega (3,335 m), the second highest peak in Panama after Volcán Barú, is the highest. Most people living inside the park belong to the Teribe and Ngöbe indigenous groups, but with some colonization by mestizos on the Chiriquí side. The only areas of the park easily visited are Los Nubes (park headquarters) and the Los Quetzales Cabins, both near Cerro Punta on the Chiriquí side. Access to the Caribbean slope is difficult, and most of its foothill and highland areas, including Cerro Fabrega, has never been ornithologically surveyed.

Key Biodiversity La Amistad is one of the most important strongholds for the globally threatened Bare-necked Umbrellabird and Three-wattled Bellbird. Other globally threatened and near-threatened species include Harpy and Crested Eagle, Black Guan, Great Curassow, Great Green Macaw, Red-fronted Parrotlet, Resplendent Quetzal and Blue-and-gold Tanager. An additional 76 nationally threatened species also occur. The park contains 47 of 54 species (87%) of the Costa Rica and Panama Highlands EBA, as well as 9 of 11 species (82%) of the Central American Caribbean Slope EBA. On the Chiriquí side, however, the boundary is too high to include any endemics of the Southern Central American Pacific Slope EBA. With 56 endemic species, La Amistad may have one of the highest totals of any area in the world. The site also includes 48 of 68 species (71%) of the N06 biome, and 17 of 42 species (40%) of the N05 biome.

Non-bird biodiversity: La Amistad is extremely rich in wildlife. Mammals found or expected in the park include Water Opossum, Slaty Mouse Opossum, Central American Wooly Opossum, Silky Anteater, Blackish Small-eared Shrew, Talamancan Small-eared Shrew, Ender's Small-eared Shrew, Honduran White Bat, Talamancan Yellow-shouldered Bat, Hairy-legged Vampire Bat, Thumbless Bat, Spix's Disc-winged Bat, Brazilian Free-tailed Bat, Central American Spider Monkey, Montane Squirrel, Chiriqui Pocket Gopher, Sprightly Pygmy Rice Rat, Underwood's Water Mouse, Chiriqui Singing Mouse, Chiriqui Harvest Mouse, Naked-footed Deer Mouse, Dice's Rabbit, Mexican Porcupine, Cacomistle, Olingo, Neotropical River Otter, Ocelot, Margay, Jaguarundi, Puma, Jaguar and Baird's Tapir. Reptiles and amphibians found or expected include the frogs and toads Atelopus chiriquiensis, A. varius, Bufo fastidiosus, B. peripatetes, Crepidophyrne epiotica, Dendrobates speciosus, Duellmanohyla lythrodes, Duellmanohyla uranochroa, Hyla debilis, H. graceae, H. lancasteri, H. pseudopuma, H. rivularis, H. tica, H. zeteki, Phyllomedusa lemur, Ptychohyla legleri, Eleutherodactylus emcelae, E. jota, E. melanostictus, E. noblei, E. pardalis, and Rana vibricaria; the salamanders Bolitoglossa compacta, B. marmorea, B. minutula, B. robusta, Oedipina alfaroi and O. grandis; the lizards Anadia ocellata, Anolis aquaticus, A. fungosus, A. kemptoni, A. microtus, A. pandoensis, A. vociferans, and A. woodi, and the snakes Hydromorphus dunni, Rhadinaea calligaster, R. godmani, R. pulveriventris, Urotheca decipiens, Atropoides nummifer, A. picadoi, and Cerrophidion godmani.

Populations of IBA trigger species

Species Season Period Population estimate Quality of estimate IBA Criteria IUCN Category
Prong-billed Barbet Semnornis frantzii unknown  2006  unknown  A2, A3  Least Concern 
Black Guan Chamaepetes unicolor breeding  2006  1,000-2,499 individuals  poor  A1, A2, A3  Near Threatened 
Great Curassow Crax rubra breeding  2006  1,000-2,499 individuals  poor  A1  Vulnerable 
Black-breasted Wood-quail Odontophorus leucolaemus unknown  2006  unknown  A2, A3  Least Concern 
Purplish-backed Quail-dove Zentrygon lawrencii unknown  2006  unknown  A2, A3  Least Concern 
Buff-fronted Quail-dove Zentrygon costaricensis unknown  2006  unknown  A2, A3  Least Concern 
Chiriqui Quail-dove Zentrygon chiriquensis unknown  2006  unknown  A2, A3  Least Concern 
Great Green Macaw Ara ambiguus breeding  2006  50-249 individuals  poor  A1  Endangered 
Sulphur-winged Parakeet Pyrrhura hoffmanni unknown  2006  unknown  A2, A3  Least Concern 
Red-fronted Parrotlet Touit costaricensis breeding  2006  1,000-2,499 individuals  poor  A1, A2, A3  Vulnerable 
Bare-shanked Screech-owl Megascops clarkii unknown  2006  unknown  A2, A3  Least Concern 
Costa Rican Pygmy-owl Glaucidium costaricanum unknown  2006  unknown  A2, A3  Least Concern 
Dusky Nightjar Antrostomus saturatus unknown  2006  unknown  A2, A3  Least Concern 
Lampornis castaneoventris unknown  2006  unknown  A2, A3  Not Recognised 
Fiery-throated Hummingbird Panterpe insignis unknown  2006  unknown  A2, A3  Least Concern 
Black-bellied Hummingbird Eupherusa nigriventris unknown  2006  unknown  A2, A3  Least Concern 
Magenta-throated Woodstar Calliphlox bryantae unknown  2006  unknown  A2, A3  Least Concern 
Volcano Hummingbird Selasphorus flammula unknown  2006  unknown  A2, A3  Least Concern 
Scintillant Hummingbird Selasphorus scintilla unknown  2006  unknown  A2, A3  Least Concern 
Trogon aurantiiventris unknown  2006  unknown  A2, A3  Not Recognised 
Lattice-tailed Trogon Trogon clathratus unknown  2006  unknown  A2, A3  Least Concern 
Resplendent Quetzal Pharomachrus mocinno breeding  2006  1,000-2,499 individuals  poor  A1  Near Threatened 
Rufous-winged Woodpecker Piculus simplex unknown  2006  unknown  A3  Least Concern 
Chestnut-colored Woodpecker Celeus castaneus unknown  2006  unknown  A3  Least Concern 
White-collared Manakin Manacus candei unknown  2006  unknown  A3  Least Concern 
Grey-headed Piprites Piprites griseiceps unknown  2006  unknown  A2, A3  Least Concern 
Bare-necked Umbrellabird Cephalopterus glabricollis breeding  2006  250-999 individuals  poor  A1, A2, A3  Endangered 
Three-wattled Bellbird Procnias tricarunculatus breeding  2006  1,000-2,499 individuals  poor  A1, A2  Vulnerable 
Snowy Cotinga Carpodectes nitidus unknown  2006  unknown  A2, A3  Least Concern 
Olive-sided Flycatcher Contopus cooperi winter  2006  1,000-2,499 individuals  poor  A1  Near Threatened 
Dark Pewee Contopus lugubris unknown  2006  unknown  A2, A3  Least Concern 
Ochraceous Pewee Contopus ochraceus unknown  2006  unknown  A2, A3  Least Concern 
Black-capped Flycatcher Empidonax atriceps unknown  2006  unknown  A2, A3  Least Concern 
Golden-bellied Flycatcher Myiodynastes hemichrysus unknown  2006  unknown  A2, A3  Least Concern 
Silvery-fronted Tapaculo Scytalopus argentifrons unknown  2006  unknown  A2, A3  Least Concern 
Black-crowned Antpitta Pittasoma michleri unknown  2006  unknown  A2  Least Concern 
Ruddy Treerunner Margarornis rubiginosus unknown  2006  unknown  A2, A3  Least Concern 
Streak-breasted Treehunter Thripadectes rufobrunneus unknown  2006  unknown  A2, A3  Least Concern 
Yellow-winged Vireo Vireo carmioli unknown  2006  unknown  A2, A3  Least Concern 
Silvery-throated Jay Cyanolyca argentigula unknown  2006  unknown  A2, A3  Least Concern 
Black-and-yellow Silky-flycatcher Phainoptila melanoxantha unknown  2006  unknown  A2, A3  Least Concern 
Long-tailed Silky-flycatcher Ptilogonys caudatus unknown  2006  unknown  A2, A3  Least Concern 
Black-throated Wren Thryothorus atrogularis unknown  2006  unknown  A2, A3  Least Concern 
Stripe-breasted Wren Thryothorus thoracicus unknown  2006  unknown  A3  Least Concern 
Ochraceous Wren Troglodytes ochraceus unknown  2006  unknown  A2, A3  Least Concern 
Black-faced Solitaire Myadestes melanops unknown  2006  unknown  A2, A3  Least Concern 
Black-billed Nightingale-thrush Catharus gracilirostris unknown  2006  unknown  A2, A3  Least Concern 
Flame-throated Warbler Parula gutturalis unknown  2006  unknown  A2, A3  Least Concern 
Collared Redstart Myioborus torquatus unknown  2006  unknown  A2, A3  Least Concern 
Black-cheeked Warbler Basileuterus melanogenys unknown  2006  unknown  A2, A3  Least Concern 
Wrenthrush Zeledonia coronata unknown  2006  unknown  A2, A3  Least Concern 
Montezuma Oropendola Psarocolius montezuma unknown  2006  unknown  A3  Least Concern 
Peg-billed Finch Acanthidops bairdi unknown  2006  unknown  A2, A3  Least Concern 
Sooty-faced Finch Arremon crassirostris unknown  2006  unknown  A2, A3  Least Concern 
Large-footed Finch Pezopetes capitalis unknown  2006  unknown  A2, A3  Least Concern 
Yellow-thighed Finch Pselliophorus tibialis unknown  2006  unknown  A2, A3  Least Concern 
White-throated Shrike-tanager Lanio leucothorax unknown  2006  unknown  A3  Least Concern 
Crimson-collared Tanager Ramphocelus sanguinolentus unknown  2006  unknown  A3  Least Concern 
Scarlet-rumped Tanager Ramphocelus passerinii unknown  2006  unknown  A3  Least Concern 
Blue-and-gold Tanager Bangsia arcaei breeding  2006  2,500-9,999 individuals  poor  A1, A2, A3  Near Threatened 
Spangle-cheeked Tanager Tangara dowii unknown  2006  unknown  A2, A3  Least Concern 
Sulphur-rumped Tanager Heterospingus rubrifrons unknown  2006  unknown  A2, A3  Least Concern 
Black-and-yellow Tanager Chrysothlypis chrysomelas unknown  2006  unknown  A2  Least Concern 
Slaty Flowerpiercer Diglossa plumbea unknown  2006  unknown  A2, A3  Least Concern 
Sooty-capped Bush-tanager Chlorospingus pileatus unknown  2006  unknown  A2, A3  Least Concern 
Yellow-crowned Euphonia Euphonia luteicapilla unknown  2006  unknown  A3  Least Concern 
Olive-backed Euphonia Euphonia gouldi unknown  2006  unknown  A3  Least Concern 
Tawny-capped Euphonia Euphonia anneae unknown  2006  unknown  A2, A3  Least Concern 
Golden-browed Chlorophonia Chlorophonia callophrys unknown  2006  unknown  A2, A3  Least Concern 
Black-thighed Grosbeak Pheucticus tibialis unknown  2006  unknown  A2, A3  Least Concern 
Black-faced Grosbeak Caryothraustes poliogaster unknown  2006  unknown  A3  Least Concern 

Protected areas

Protected area Designation Area (ha) Relationship with IBA Overlap with IBA (ha)  
La Amistad International Park 208,182 protected area contains site 207,000  
La Amistad National Park 207,000 is identical to site 207,000  
Reserva de la Biósfera de La Amistad UNESCO-MAB Biosphere Reserve 655,558 protected area contains site 207,000  
Talamanca Range-La Amistad Reserves / La Amistad National Park World Heritage Site 567,845 is identical to site 207,000  

Habitats

IUCN habitat Habitat detail Extent (% of site)
Artificial - terrestrial   minor
Forest   major

Land use

Land-use Extent (% of site)
tourism/recreation major
nature conservation and research major

Protection status La Amistad International Park was established in 1988, and declared a World Heritage Site in 1990. On the Caribbean side, the Palo Seco Protection Forest forms a buffer zone between the park and the coast (except in the valley of the Yorkin River), and on the Pacific side La Amistad is contiguous with Volcán Barú National Park. Together with the Fortuna Forest Reserve, the adjacent protected areas total more than 365,000 ha. La Amistad is a bi-national park together with La Amistad International Park in Costa Rica (193,929 ha). With adjacent areas in Costa Rica (263,000 ha), this vast international protected complex thus covers more than 820,000 ha.

References Angehr, George R. 2003. Directorio de areas importantes para aves en Panama. Directory of important bird areas in Panama. Panama: Sociedad Audubon de Panama. Ridgely, Robert S. 1982. Faunal Studies 10. Avifauna of the Changuinola Dam site. en/in: Abdiel Adames (compilador/compiler), Environmental Assessment of the Changuinola-1 Hydroelectric Project. Gorgas Memorial Laboratory, Panama. Ridgely, Robert S., and John A. Gwynne. 1989. A Guide to the Birds of Panama (Second Edition). Princeton University Press, Princeton, New Jersey. Wetmore, Alexander. 1965. The Birds of the Republic of Panama. Part 1. Tinamidae (Tinamous) to Rhynchopidae (Skimmers). Smithsonian Institution, Washington D.C. Wetmore, Alexander. 1968. The Birds of the Republic of Panama. Part 2. Columbidae (Pigeons) to Picidae (Woodpeckers). Smithsonian Institution, Washington D.C. Wetmore, Alexander. 1973. The Birds of the Republic of Panama. Part 3. Passeriformes: Dendrocolaptidae (Woodcreepers) to Oxyruncidae (Sharpbill). Smithsonian Institution, Washington D.C. Wetmore, Alexander, Roger F. Pasquier, and Storrs L. Olson. 1984. The Birds of the Republic of Panama. Part 4. Passeriformes: Hirundinidae (Swallows) to Fringillidae (Finches). Smithsonian Institution, Washington D.C.

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Recommended citation  BirdLife International (2014) Important Bird Areas factsheet: La Amistad International Park (part of La Amistad and Surrounding Areas AZE). Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 28/12/2014

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