Parque Nacional Arrecifes de Xcalak

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Parque Nacional Arrecifes de Xcalak

  • Country: 
  • Site number: 
  • Area: 
    17,949 ha
  • Designation date: 
  • Coordinates: 
    18°19'N 87°48'W
Materials presented on this website, particularly maps and territorial information, are as-is and as-available based on available data and do not imply the expression of any opinion whatsoever on the part of the Secretariat of the Ramsar Convention concerning the legal status of any country, territory, city or area, or of its authorities, or concerning the delimitation of its frontiers or boundaries.


Parque Nacional Arrecifes de Xcalak. 27/11/03; Quintana Roo; 17,949 ha; 18°20'N 087°48'W. National Park. A well preserved area on the Caribbean coast bordering Belize, comprising coral reefs, coastal lagoons, beaches, mangrove swamps and karstic aquifers. An atypical submarine relief of massifs and channels, known as "La Poza", is one of the main highlights of the site. Endangered and near-threatened animals such as Baird's Tapir Tapirus bairdii, the Jaguar Panthera Onca, the American Manatee Trichechus manatus, the Central American Cacomistle Bassariscus sumichrasti, and the Black Catbird Melanoptila glabrirostris inhabit the park. A number of waterbirds are common nesters in the site, while the mangrove swamps and lagoons are important for spawning Rock-cod Ephinephelus striatus. Coral reefs are dominated by Elkhorn Coral Acropora palmata and fish species such as Noronha wrasse Thalassoma bifasciatum and Blue Tang Acanthurus coeruleus. Commercial fishing is regulated, though closed seasons are not fully enforced. Scuba diving and sport fishing are the main tourist activities, but large-scale hotel developments are expected in the near future, with possible threats to the ecosystem. A management plan will soon be published addressing these issues. Ramsar site no. 1320. Most recent RIS information: 2003.

Administrative region: 
Quintana Roo

  • National legal designation: 
    • Parque Nacional - Arrecifes de Xcalak
  • Last publication date: 


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