Complejo Cenagoso de Zapatosa

Faena de pescadores en el corregimiento de Candelaria, municipio de Chimichagua
Atardecer en la ciénaga de Zapatosa
Pescadores después de la faena de pesca con especies como Bocachico y Pacora
Vista panorámica del puerto de Chimichagua, en época de inundación de la Ciénaga de Zapatosa
Ciénaga de Zapatosa en período de inundación
Chalupas, sistema de transporte en la Ciénaga de Zapatosa
Panorámica del Complejo de Zapatosa vista desde el municipio de Tamalameque
Proceso de participación comunitaria en el complejo de Zapatosa en los procesos de declaratoria como área protegida
Pato Yuyo en la ciénaga de Zapatosa
Garza Real en la ciénaga de Zapatosa

Complejo Cenagoso de Zapatosa

  • Country: 
  • Site number: 
  • Area: 
    121,725 ha
  • Designation date: 
  • Coordinates: 
    09°07'N 73°47'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.


The Site comprises approximately 1,900 swamps, making it the largest continental swamp complex in Colombia. It is also one of the primary centres of bird diversity in Colombia, supporting 202 species including 34 migrants such as the osprey (Pandion haliaetus), the brown-chested martin (Progne tapera) and the blackpoll warbler (Setophaga striata). The Site also harbours five birds of considerable conservation significance due to their limited distribution range, namely the chestnut-winged chachalaca (Ortalis garrula), the red-billed emerald Chlorostilbon gibsoni, the chestnut piculet Picumnus cinnamomeus, the white-whiskered spinetail Synallaxis candei, and the northern screamer Chauna chavaria which is categorized as vulnerable in Colombia due to the loss of its habitat and illegal hunting. The Site also hosts threatened species such as the critically endangered greater Martinique skink (Mabuya mabouya) and cotton-headed tamarin (Saguinus oedipus), and the endangered tapeti (Sylvilagus brasiliensis). Additionally, the Site’s fish stocks are crucial to the livelihoods of local fishermen. The primary threats to the Site include oil and gas drilling, mining and the discharge of untreated wastewater.

Administrative region: 
Se encuentra ubicado en el departamento del Cesar y Magdalena.

  • National legal designation: 
    • Distrito Regional de Manejo Integrado DRMI - Distrito Regional de Manejo Integrado Complejo Cenagoso de la Zapatosa
  • Last publication date: 


Ramsar Information Sheet (RIS)

Additional reports and documents