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Cerro Cahuí Protected Biotope is located in northern Guatemala, in the municipality of San Jose, department of Petén. In 1989, Cerro Cahuí was legally declared a protected area and is one of the few natural regions in the buffer zone of the Mayan Biosphere Reserve that remains in relatively good state. Located on the road leading to Tikal National Park, Cerro Cahuí has become a potentially important tourist destination. Although local inhabitants make careful use of the protected area, the surrounding zones are being rapidly deforested. If the deforestation trend is not reverted, the remaining forest will soon become isolated.




Fauna reported for the biotope includes 29 mammal, 11 amphibian, 17 reptile, and 82 bird species. The howler monkey (Alouatta pigra), Morelet's crocodile (Crocodylus moreletii), and Central American river turtle (Dermatemys mawii) are regional endemic species that live in the biotope. In addition, the four bat species in the reserve are indicative of a non-disturbed mature forest. That jaguars (Panthera onca) roam throughout the area indicates that the biotope is still somehow connected to Tikal National Park. Thirteen of the bird species reported are included in CONAP's Red List. A. pigra, D. mawii, P. onca, and C. moreletii have been added to UICN's red list; the first two are considered endangered. 




The biotope is critically threatened, and will most likely not succeed in protecting and maintaining its biological diversity in the short term unless emergency actions are taken. The principal threats include the advance of the agricultural and cattle frontiers, which gradually isolate the area. Forest fires, illegal hunting and wood extraction, and lack of institutional control are among other worrisome threats.


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