Conserving Bañados del Quirquincho: a key area for threatened species in Argentina

Patricia Beatriz Puechagut

The Bañados del Quirquincho is one of the few wetlands in the Dry Chaco of Argentina and an Important Bird Area. It harbors many threatened species such as Chacoan peccary (Catagonus wagneri), Lowland tapir (Tapirus terrestris), Giant armadillo (Priodontes maximus), White - lipped peccary (Tayassu pecari) and Greater rhea (Rhea americana). These focal species are considered Conservation Values (species which are internationally and/or locally threatened and are used and esteemed by local people) in Los Palmares Integrated Land Planning Management plan. To conserve the wetland species and its ecosystem services we will determine the distribution of the focal species and their main threats (logging, hunting and overgrazing). To asses the species population and the threats intensity and distribution we will carry out camera trap surveys and interviews with local people.

We will also develop a conservation education campaign to increase local people awareness about the importance of the wetland and the species. We will determine priority areas for conservation to be included in the zoning scheme of the area. Our results will enable us to reach the objectives proposed in the Management Plan and we will also improve resource management and contribute to the conservation of the biodiversity of the wetland.