Manu National Park

Manu National Park the name has acquired a legendary mystique among birdwatchers, naturalist and conservationist throughout the world, no other park on the planet protects so many species of birds, so many plants and animals, as this outstanding wilderness area, only 20 % of the entire Amazon has the rich floodplain soils that yield abundant rainforest fruits and support dense population of forest wildlife, of that area a mere of one percent is both protected by wildlife reserves and has a regular access by overland transport and realible motorboat, these are the qualities that have earned Manu its fabled reputation as the jewel in the crown of the Amazon Wildlife viewing experiences and for those whose choose to take the land route into spectrum on contrasting natural environments and wildlife , all the way from the high Andes to the Amazonian lowland rainforest as unique experience.

Manu National Park the most biodiverse area on the earth its located in the southeastern Peru close to many other important tourism and wildlife destinations such as : Cusco , Machupicchu , Lake Titicaca, Arequipa, the Colca Canyon , the Nazca lines and Paracas, making it a key destination on any trip to Peru.

What is the Difference between the Manu Reserved Zone - Manu National Park and Cultural Zone?

These 2 zones belongs and are integrated in the Manu Biosphere Reserve which is the proper name to the entire reserved however the Cultural Zone or buffer Zone its the zone that surrounds the Manu National Park or Reserved Zone, one objective of the buffer zone of the parks are to reduces the pression from humans activities, in fact the territory at the Buffer Zone it’s also known as the Cultural Zone where most of the short guided tours are lead in our programs so the extensive trips usually goes to the Manu Reserved Zone or the Manu Park (this is the area that is mostly known in the tourism industry)

Manu Biosphere Reserve

In 1977, the Organization of United Nations for the Educational, Scientific and Cultural (UNESCO) declared the Biosphere Reserve territories for colonization adjacent to the Manu National Park and the Manu Reserved Zone Its protection to an area of 1 881 200 hectares). It is a large area of wilderness , biologically diverse and culturally as it shelters different social groups from the Andean Mountains and some Native Communities and even populations of tribes in voluntary isolation living in an ancestral way. In 1987, it became part of the UNESCO World Heritage List as a natural heritage of humanity.

Initially the Manu Biosphere Reserve was created with its three zones (core, buffer and transition); However nowadays have been some modifications within the protected area legally established in the core area (Manu National Park - SERNANP), which has motivated the effort to work on an update both in the zoning of the Reserve and to propose a possible Expansion of it, with the interest of involving and benefiting a greater number of populations, as well as to expand its sphere of influence, with the aim of integrating new populations and consolidating a sustainable development model , according the UNESCO's guidelines for conservation, research and development.

Here the tourism plays an important role , in fact the private tourist enterprises represent a key of development for the natural and cultural value and strategic for the purpose of Reserve.

The Areas of the Manu Biosphere Reserve

Core Zone - Manu National Park - Manu Reserved Zone

Here the names above are comprises to one speciffic and large area , this is the zone that is monitored and managed by SERNANP the area where only few activities can be developed such as; scientific investigation, monitoring of biological processes and activities of traditional collection by the native communities and controlled tourism are developed.

Buffer Zone - Cultural Zone of Manu

The Aim of this Zone should help to protect the core zone. It is also possible to rehabilitate and use degraded areas sustainably. In this area there are educational, cultural, tourist and recreational facilities.

The Manu National Park Records

The Rainforest

Lowlands rainforest of the new world tropics contain the most complex biological communities on earth, about half of the world´s lowland tropical forest are located in Latin America. The Amazon basin is the world´s oldest jungle and dates back 75 million years. It is spread over nine countries, including Peru. About one fifth of the earth´s plants and birds lives here. It is believed that at least fifty percent of the species, especially insect, are yet to be discovered, let alone to be studied.

Tropical rainforest have ten time as many species as an equivalent area of temperate woodland, this is through to have results from a long history of instability , leading to more specialized species. Another reason for this enormous biodiversity is to be found in the many different micro-habitats. From the canopy level down to the ground level, the light intensity decreases by about 97 percent, strong winds are widely blocked, humidity increases , from dessert like on top of the trees , where even the cacti grow to a constant 100 % humidity farther down, from water only available in the canopy during the rain , to the water always available in swampy areas on ground level . rivers meander freely , constantly eating away the river banks at the outer curves , leaving new sandbanks in the inner curves, awating specialized colonizing plant species, sometimes oxbow alkes are being formed, once again with their own specialist plants , where the rivers regularly floods the land , the soil might be very fertile , but due to the heavy rains , most of the soil (over 95 %) are extremely poor in nutrients , its this enormous variety in micro-habitats that explain why some species can co-exist.


The sun strikes the tropics and is hence more intensive here than anywhere else in the world , daylight hours are more or less constant throughout the year , temperatures are high and constant and the annual range of temperatures is very small (only about 2º C) the rainfall its seasonal with approximately 250 cm annually and only rarely lees cm monthly . in the tropics the climate its predictable , but the weather its unpredictable.


Rainforest soil is poor in nutrients and easily exhausted by farming. the soil are often stained red with iron compounds , usually the soil layer its thin , the nutrients in the soil easily leach away . only 0,1 % of the nutrients falling down (in leaves and branches ) penetrate bellow the first 5 cm of soil.

Most of the nutrients are held by the vegetation itself. The rainforest floor has only a very thin layer of organic material (humus) . if the soil are exposed they become exhausted and the return of the original complex forest vegetation might take up to 500 years, if at all possible

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