Ecological Services in the Caribbean
Oficina de Servicios Ecológicos del Caribe -- Southeast Region
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Shade Coffee for Wildlife

Moca, Guaba, Guamá y Capa Prieto para restaurar fincas en Yauco y Maricao.


bee on a white coffee flower

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A total of 6,600 native trees will be planted within 291 acres of coffee, oranges and banana plantations in the Yauco and Maricao Mountains of Puerto Rico. On April 25 and April 27, 2011, the US Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS), Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS), Envirosurvey Inc. and the Puerto Rico Department of Natural and Environmental Resources (DNER) delivered 6,600 native trees of moca, guaba, guamá and capa prieto, to 16 farmers that will restore and conserve habitat for wildlife. These multicrop farms need the shade producing trees to protect their crops from wind damage and minimize soil erosion. Farmers that participate in this project are committing to long term conservation as they agree to maintain the native trees planted for at least 10 years. Their agreements with federal agencies include several practices that will provide food and shelter for migratory birds and other species including pollinator like bees. Restoration work in Maricao will benefit the Elfin-woods Warbler, a vulnerable species.

NRCS, will provide economic incentives for 11 farms, and the USFWS will provide economic incentives for the remaining eight. The USFWS is responsible for providing all the trees needed to implement the project. Farmers will receive and plant more native trees within the next two years.

¿Where do these trees come from?
These trees are produced by farmers that collect wild seeds from private lands. Collecting seeds from public forest lands is prohibited by law. Envirosurvey is a nonprofit organization contracted by the USFWS and they subcontract farmers like Fidencio Sánchez and Juan Polanco to collect seeds and produce the trees.

Facts at a glance:
19 farms
17 farmers
291 acres, 300 cuerdas
6,600 native tres: Guamá, Moca, Guaba, Capa Prieto

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Last updated: May 3, 2011