|Central coordinates||82o 54.08' West 8o 10.83' North|
|IBA criteria||A1, A2, A3|
|Altitude||40 - 250m|
|Year of IBA assessment||2007|
Ornithological information The globally near-threatened, and nationally critically endangered, Baird's Trogon persists at the site. The threatened Yellow-billed Cotinga was recorded once in 1982, but it is unlikely that it now occurs regularly. The area contains 12 of 16 species (75%) of South Central American Pacific Slope EBA, and 14 of 42 species (33%) of biome N05. Several nationally endangered species also occur. Red-throated Caracara was present in 1982 but is now probably gone.
Site description This site consists of the remaining forest fragments of the Burica Peninsula south of Puerto Armuelles. Charco Azul, on the coast 4 km south of Puerto Armuelles, consists of three adjacent fragments of mostly young secondary lowland evergreen forest (121 ha total) around the Quebrada Merida. The forest is within the operating area of the facilities of Petroterminales de Panamá (PTP), the Pacific terminal of the oil pipeline from Puerto Armuelles to Chiriquí Grande. It is easily accessible by road. The Quebrada Mellicita area, 7-11 km south of Puerto Armuelles, contains five large and several smaller fragments of more mature forest (2 to 56 ha, about 224 ha in all). The remaining forest is in the Quebradas Manzanillo, Melliza, and Mellicita within 3.5 km of the coast.
|Species||Season||Period||Population estimate||Quality of estimate||IBA Criteria||IUCN Category|
|Costa Rican Swift Chaetura fumosa||unknown||2006||-||-||A2, A3||Least Concern|
|Veraguan Mango Anthracothorax veraguensis||unknown||2006||-||-||A2, A3||Least Concern|
|White-crested Coquette Lophornis adorabilis||unknown||2006||-||-||A2, A3||Least Concern|
|Garden Emerald Chlorostilbon assimilis||unknown||2006||-||-||A3||Least Concern|
|Charming Hummingbird Amazilia decora||unknown||2006||-||-||A2, A3||Least Concern|
|Baird's Trogon Trogon bairdii||breeding||2006||-||poor||A1, A2, A3||Near Threatened|
|Fiery-billed Aracari Pteroglossus frantzii||unknown||2006||-||-||A2, A3||Least Concern|
|Golden-naped Woodpecker Melanerpes chrysauchen||unknown||2006||-||-||A2||Least Concern|
|Rufous-winged Woodpecker Piculus simplex||unknown||2006||-||-||A3||Least Concern|
|Orange-collared Manakin Manacus aurantiacus||unknown||2006||-||-||A2, A3||Least Concern|
|Yellow-billed Cotinga Carpodectes antoniae||unknown||2006||1 individuals||poor||A1, A2, A3||Endangered|
|Black-hooded Antshrike Thamnophilus bridgesi||unknown||2006||-||-||A2, A3||Least Concern|
|Tawny-winged Woodcreeper Dendrocincla anabatina||unknown||2006||-||-||A3||Least Concern|
|Riverside Wren Thryothorus semibadius||unknown||2006||-||-||A2, A3||Least Concern|
|White-throated Shrike-tanager Lanio leucothorax||unknown||2006||-||-||A3||Least Concern|
|Cherrie's Tanager Ramphocelus costaricensis||unknown||2006||-||-||A2, A3||Least Concern|
|Yellow-crowned Euphonia Euphonia luteicapilla||unknown||2006||-||-||A3||Least Concern|
|IUCN habitat||Habitat detail||Extent (% of site)|
|Artificial landscapes (terrestrial)||major|
|Land-use||Extent (% of site)|
Other biodiversity The globally endangered Red-backed Squirrel Monkey* occurs, as well as Central American Wooly Opossum, Central American Spider Monkey, Neotropical River Otter, Ocelot and Jaguarundi (Rodríguez 2000, A. Rodríguez pers. com.). Reptiles and amphibians that have been recorded from the Puerto Armuelles area include the frog Eleutherodactylus taurus, the salamander Bolitoglossa lignicolor, the lizards Sphaerodactylus graptolaemus, Bachia blairi, Sphenomorphus cherriei and Leposoma southi, and the snake Micrurus clarki.
Management considerations In 1982 the area contained a large tract of continuous forest, but this has since been almost entirely cleared for cattle pasture, as has virtually all other forest on the southern Burica Peninsula including the Costa Rican side, and clearing continues. Although Charco Azul is not formally protected, PTP has prevented clearing on its property for security reasons, allowing the forest to begin regenerating. The conservation value of the remaining fragments would be enhanced if they could be linked by allowing some of the intervening pasture to revert to second growth.
Protection status The area is privately owned.
Conservation response None known.
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., 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 (2013) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Quebrada Mellicita-Charco Azul. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 22/05/2013
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