Naturales de Colombia
Old Providence McBean Lagoon National Park, located on the coast of Providencia Island in the Caribbean Sea, protects part of the second largest barrier reef in the Caribbean. Old Providence’s coral reefs surround the only high-altitude volcanic island found on the Mesoamerican shelf, and they ae uniquely complex due to a combination of wave action, exposure to the Caribbean Current, and other physical oceanographic factors. Soft coral fauna may be considered some of the richest from the Western part of the Caribbean Sea, with 44 species of octocorals.
The National Park lies within a biodiversity hotspot and its healthy coral reefs, as well as mangroves and seagrasses, host an abundant, diverse assemblage of species. This includes including over 109 species of fish, 21 species of sponges, and diverse assemblages of crustaceans, annelids, and mollusks. The park also hosts an impressive diversity of bird species, both migratory and resident, due to the large diversity of habitats and islets within a relatively small area. Old Providence lies within the Seaflower Marine Protected Area designated as Specially Protected Area and Wildlife (SPAW) Protected Areas of the Wider Caribbean Region, and an Important Bird Area (IBA) by Birdlife International.
The MPA was created in collaboration with the local indigenous population, the Raizales of the islands San Andres, Providencia, and Santa Catalina. Specifically, it was designated in response to a grassroots protest by the inhabitants of Providencia Island; these residents demanded a small area be protected to block a large tourism development project. Today, approximately 90% of the park staff is Raizal, and management prioritizes the recognition of the Raizal territory and respect for their traditional practices and contributions to the conservation and management of the area.
El Parque Nacional Natural Old Providence McBean Lagoon
- Award Year
- Parques Nacionales Naturales de Colombia
- 9.4 km²
- Other Awards and Designations