Author Archives: Tompkins Conservation

Tompkins Conservation Chile donates books to public libraries across Chile

The books Corcovado National Park, Yendegaia National Park and the 25-year Retrospective compile photographs and essays on nature and conservation, and will be available through Chile’s Public Library Network thanks to an alliance with the National Cultural Heritage Service.

A collaboration agreement signed by Tompkins Conservation Chile and the National Service of Cultural Heritage is promoting environmental knowledge and culture throughout Chile with the distribution of a thousand copies of Corcovado National Park, Yendegaia National Park and the 25-year Retrospective to libraries from Arica to Punta Arenas.

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Patagonia’s Route of Parks: a Crucial Carbon Sink in South America

The 17 national parks located between Puerto Montt and Cape Horn store about 30% of the total carbon found in the soil and biomass in all of Chile. As one of the principal concentrations of carbon storage in South America, it’s crucial to the mitigation of global climate change.  


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Arcadia Charitable Fund supports Tompkins Conservation in the protection of endangered huemul deer in Patagonia

Arcadia, a charitable fund of Lisbet Rausing and Peter Baldwin, has contributed to the acquisition of three properties adjacent to Cerro Castillo National Park in Chilean Patagonia, which will be donated to the Chilean state in a few years. This purchase allows the launch of the ambitious National Huemul Corridor.

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Once-extinct Macaws are Repopulating Iberá

Red-and-green Macaw - ©Rewilding Argentina -1

Rewilding Argentina has released five juvenile red-and-green macaws as part of an ongoing project to return this extinct species to Argentina.

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A TED Talk by Kristine Tompkins

As part of TED 2020 Uncharted, the President of Tompkins Conservation, Kristine Tompkins, presents a call to reimagine the future of our planet. She speaks as someone who followed up on a long stint as CEO of Patagonia with a thirty-year career in conservation. In this intimate TED Talk, she argues that restoring nature and carrying out rewilding on a large scale are actions essential for our collective survival that are not as impossible as we might think.

 

In the talk, she emphasizes, “Every human life is affected by the actions of every other human life around the globe and the fate of humanity is tied to the health of the planet.  We have a common destiny—we can flourish, or suffer— but it’s going to be together.”

 

Not the usual TED talk, it was filmed at her dining room table due to the pandemic. You can find it at go.ted.com/kristinetompkins.

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Saving Endangered Darwin’s Rhea in Patagonia

Tompkins Conservation, with assistance from the Chilean parks service, has released fourteen Darwin’s rheas in Patagonia National Park to reestablish a sustainable wild population. The initiative is part of a broader plan to rewild Patagonia.

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National Geographic magazine features Tompkins Conservation

We are very honored that the May edition of National Geographic features Tompkins Conservation in an article by the renowned science writer David Quammen. The article is part of a series on The Last Wild Places, a decade-long National Geographic Society initiative that supports six conservation initiatives around the world with the ambitious goal of preserving thirty percent of the planet by 2030.

Photo: Tomás Munita / National Geographic Photo: Tomás Munita / National Geographic

For us, a feature in the iconic yellow-bordered book, which started in 1888 and is published in 40 languages, represents a unique opportunity to share our 29-year collective effort to protect, restore and rewild the Southern Cone with people all over the world. We hope some may even be inspired and moved to act on behalf of threatened ecosystems in their own backyards.

You can read the article here and see the related documentary feature about our work to restore nine native species to Argentina’s Ibera wetlands, including once extinct jaguars, giant river otters and macaws. For more on this story, visit National Geographic.

Link: www.nationalgeographic.com/magazine/2020/05/how-an-unprecedented-gift-built-a-legacy-of-conservation-in-patagonia-feature

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(Español) Inauguración “Casa Museo Lucas Bridges”, en Parque Nacional Patagonia, busca homenajear al hombre que trajo desarrollo ganadero y cultura a la región de Aysén

Sorry, this entry is only available in European Spanish.

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Rewilding Argentina moves forward with the first birthday of Ibera’s Jaguar Cubs

CORRIENTES On June 6, Argentina will mark the one-year birthday of two jaguar cubs, the first born in the province of Corrientes in over 70 years. Arami and Mbarete, sister and brother, will play a key role in the pioneering rewilding project of CLT Argentina (Conservation Land Trust), the foundation created by Tompkins Conservation. In the coming year, the cubs will be prepared for their eventual release in the vast protected wetlands of Iberá.

Jaguar cubs

The largest feline in the Americas, jaguars (Panthera onca) were once found from southwestern United States to Argentina. Today, the species is in critical danger of extinction in Argentina, having lost 95% of its historic range. The fragmentation of jaguar territory throughout the Americas has caused the worldwide population to fall by up to 25 percent in just over two decades.

Sebastián Di Martino, Rewilding Director of CLT Argentina, emphasized, “The jaguar occupies the top of the food chain in Iberá. Its presence is vital to achieve a healthy and complete ecosystem with a full complement of species serving their ecological role.”

The huge protected area of the adjoining Iberá National Park and Iberá Provincial Park offers ideal conditions for the comeback of the jaguar. The cubs are the first of their species born in the Jaguar Reintroduction Center, a state-of-the-art facility and the largest onsite breeding center for felines in the Americas. The cubs live in a specially-designed enclosure of 1.5 hectares with their mother, Tania. Remote video cameras provide wildlife technicians with detailed knowledge of the cubs’ development, while avoiding direct human contact which would compromise their ability to survive in the wild.

The center currently houses eight jaguars, including four reproductive specimens donated by zoos and rescue centers in Argentina, Brazil and Paraguay, which cannot be liberated, and four releasable cubs, two of which are orphans rescued from the wild. Tania, the mother of Arami and Mbarete, came from a zoo. Though missing a foot from a previous injury, she learned to hunt wild prey at the center and has shared her newfound expertise with the cubs.

Kristine Tompkins, president of Tompkins Conservation and UN Patron of Protected Areas, said, “After ten years of hard work to bring back the jaguar, we celebrate that these cubs born under our care are thriving at their one year mark. They will one day be the first generation of jaguars returning to roam free in the Iberá wetlands.”

The work of CLT in Iberá was first initiated by Douglas and Kristine Tompkins in 1997. In collaboration with the provincial and national government, the organization has donated over 60,000 hectares to the Argentine state to create the Iberá National Park, where it continues to fight the extinction crisis through working to recover locally extinct fauna, including the giant anteater, the pampas deer, the lowland tapir, the collared peccary and the red and green macaw.

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Rare Andean Deer Found in Chile’s Northern Patagonia

Thanks to an alliance between the non-profit Puelo Patagonia, Tompkins Conservation and the National Geographic Society, researchers have made the first scientific discovery of endangered huemuls (south Andean deer) in the Puelo Valley, a remote area of Chile’s Lakes District. This groundbreaking finding makes evident the need for further monitoring and protection of the species.

Huemul

May 28, 2019- Thanks to the accounts of rural settlers living in a remote region of the Andes, rare huemul deer have been discovered in an area without previous record of the species. While the Puelo Valley is located only one hundred miles from the regional capital of Puerto Montt, via an unpaved road and ferry transit on the Tagua Tagua Lake, this mountainous region near the Argentine border has seen little development. The first road arrived to the area only in the last few decades. The area currently lacks the official protection that a park or reserve status would bring.

Native to Chile and Argentina, the huemul deer has been reduced to a population of approximately 2000 individuals. It is considered extremely endangered due to threats upon its natural habitat, which include cattle, domestic dogs and wild boar. Distributed between both countries, the huemul is increasingly restricted to remote sectors that are difficult to access. Continuing this monitoring program to collect scientific data on the behavior of the species will be crucial in developing conservation plans using a cross-border approach in conjunction with non-governmental organizations, the state and local communities.

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The finding is nothing short of a milestone, according to Andrés Diez, Project Coordinator of Puelo Patagonia. He explained, “Now it’s vital to guide public and private efforts to ensure the conservation of this population of huemuls in the long term.” For Diez, the Puelo river basin represents the biodiversity of the austral Andes, “By protecting the huemul, we are ensuring the conservation of one of the most emblematic species of our country.”

Trap cameras installed by wildlife experts documented the presence of adult deer, both male and female, and fawns. The study proceeded under the technical direction of the Wildlife-Rewilding team of Tompkins Conservation, a foundation with a successful huemul conservation program in Patagonia National Park since 2005.

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Cristián Saucedo, administrator of the Tompkins Conservation Wildlife Program, explained that the initiative will continue to develop over the course of a year. After documenting the presence of the species, he noted that the coalition will propose conservation strategies with a transboundary approach, “huemuls, condors and other species are an integral part of the Patagonian Andean ecosystem shared by both Chile and Argentina.”

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