EL BALSAMAR PROTECTED NATURAL AREA
The Protected Natural Area (ANP by its initials in Spanish) El Balsamar is between 450 and 560 meters above sea level and is located between the municipalities of San Julián and Cuisnahuat, both located in the department of Sonsonate, El Salvador. Its territorial extension is 120.8 acres. Next to ANP El Balsamar are the Protected Natural Areas of Plan de Amayo and Complejo Los Farallones, which are joined by ecological corridors.
This set of Natural Areas and their ecological corridors support valuable ecosystems such as: dry tropical forest, riparian humid forest and cliff vegetation. They also guarantee the environmental goods that make life possible such as: water production, oxygen generation, carbon capture, scenic beauty, raw materials, and genetic material among others.
In the buffer zone there are areas of forests, areas of basic grain cultivation, coffee plantation in association with balsam and other forest species; as well as the communities of El Balsamar and Palo Verde, which are the direct beneficiaries of the environmental goods generated by the ANP El Balsamar.
The ANP El Balsamar is home to many non-human communities, because through the research called “Baseline of biodiversity and abiotic components of ANP El Balsamar” (Spanish) have been identified with an increasing trend: 351 species of flora (in 10% of the ANP); 44 families of insects; 13 species of amphibians; 29 species of reptiles; 122 species of birds and 32 species of mammals; Among these species are some in the category of threatened or endangered nationally and internationally. It is also worth noting that it is home to one of the national trees of El Salvador: The balsam tree, of extraordinary natural and cultural value, for which the ANP El Balsamar is a priority life refuge for its protection and conservation by the municipality.