Ciénaga de Zapata

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Ciénaga de Zapata

  • Country: 
  • Site number: 
  • Area: 
    452,000 ha
  • Designation date: 
  • Coordinates: 
    22°19'N 81°21'W
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Ciénaga de Zapata. 12/04/01; Matanzas; 452,000 ha; 22°20'N 81°22'W. UNESCO Biosphere Reserve, national park. The largest and best-preserved wetland in the Caribbean, the site is outstanding for the diversity of its bird species, especially migratory birds, and for the presence of threatened endemic species. Part of a large karst watershed, the site includes a very large variety of wetland types, including subterranean karst hydrological systems. The enormous resources of its rivers, lakes, marshes and pools, swamp forests, intertidal flats and estuarine waters, as well as a number of humanmade wetland types, are vitally important for the human communities both within the site and in its vicinity  within the site, some 19 communities, with a total of about 10,000 persons, make their livelihood chiefly by forestry, tourism, and fishing. The site has extraordinary cultural values for Cuban and Caribbean heritage, because of its important archaeological sites of ancient pre-agricultural communities as well as the customs and traditions of the present population and their traditional use of natural resources. Ramsar site no. 1062. Most recent RIS information: 2001.

Administrative region: 
Matanzas province

  • Global international designation: 
    • UNESCO Biosphere Reserve
  • National legal designation: 
    • National Park
    • National Protected Area
    • Provincial Park
    • Wildlife Refuge
  • Last publication date: 


Ramsar Information Sheet (RIS)