Site description The Serranía de Majé is an isolated mountain range on the Pacific slope, about 60 km long, 30 km south of the continental divide across the valley of the Bayano River and 15 km inland from the Pacific. The range rises gradually towards the east, with the highest point, Cerro Chucantí (1,439 m) at the eastern end. This part of the range is spectacular, with many steep bare rock towers. The Majecito, Majé, Ipetí, and Piriati Rivers drain into to Lake Bayano and the Bayano River to the north, and the Pasiga, La Maestra, Platanares, Chimán, and Congo Rivers drain into the Pacific on the south and east. The Majé Hydrological Reserve is located within the range, and the area is adjacent to the Chimán Wetlands on the coast.
Key Biodiversity The globally threatened Great Green Macaw occurs in the area, as do the globally near-threatened Harpy Eagle, Great Curassow, Russet-crowned Quail-Dove, Beautiful Treerunner, Black-billed Flycatcher, and Viridian Dacnis, and probably Crested Eagle, as well as many nationally threatened species. Such favored game species as Crested Guan and Great Curassow are fairly common inthe more remote parts of the range. The site contains 6 of 17 species (35%) of the Darién Highlands EBA, as well as several of the Darién Lowlands. Russet-crowned-Dove is represented by a subspecies endemic to the Serranía de Majé (Wetmore 1968). The remoter parts of the area are ornithologically poorly known, the only survey of the range above 1,000 m being that conducted by the Panama Audubon Society in 1996 (Angehr and Christian 2000).
Non-bird biodiversity: There are no published reports on the fauna. Mammals probably include Water Opossum, Central American Woolly Opossum, Silky Anteater, Northern Naked-tailed Armadillo, Geoffroy’s Tamarin, Western Night Monkey, Capybara, Crab-eating Raccoon, Neotropical River Otter, Ocelot, Margay, Jaguarundi, Puma, and Jaguar. Many of the reptiles and amphibians recorded from the Narganá Wildlands Area and Darién National Park may occur.
Protection status The area is presently unprotected. The higher elevations of this part of the area have been recommended for protection as a Biological Corridor in the Bayano Watershed Management Plan, but this recommendation has not been implemented. A Panama Audubon member has purchased land for a private reserve.
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.
Angehr, George R. and Daniel G. Christian. 2000. An ornithological survey of the Serranía de Majé, an isolated mountain range in eastern Panama. Bulletin of the British Ornithologists’ Club 120: 173-178.
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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