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Spectacled bear population in Huila increases

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Spectacled bear population in Huila increases

The spectacled bear population in the department of Huila continues to experience growth with the recent identification of two bear cubs in the Guacharos Puracé Biological Corridor Regional Natural Park.

These new members, who join a consolidated group of Andean bears, represent an important step in the conservation of this endangered specie.

The Community Monitoring Group Serangwain collaboration with the Regional Autonomous Corporation of Alto Magdalena, has managed to register a total 14 layers of oseznos in the Guacharos Puracé Biological Corridor Regional Natural Park since the year 2019.

The most recent sighting took place in September 2023 when the camera traps They captured images of two female spectacled bears, baptized as “Serankwa” and “Gaia”, accompanied by their respective litters of bear cubs. These bear cubs, which are approximately six months oldoffer a hopeful vision of the future population of this species in the region.

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Biologist Katherine Arenas, from the CAM, emphasized the importance of these birth records, highlighting that the Regional Natural Park Guacharos Puracé Biological Corridor is essential for the mobility of Andean bears in the department. This park is a highly mobile protected area that allows bears tomove towards the forests of the municipalities of Palestine and Pitalitowhich contributes to landscape connectivity and the movement of various wild species.

According to the Huilense Environmental Corporation, the Andean bear is one of the 1,200 species identified in Huila. Thanks to the efforts of local communities and environmental NGOs, it has been confirmed that this species inhabits andn five of the ten regional protected areaswhich is equivalent to 48% of the department’s territory. These protected areas have become crucial habitats and movement centers for threatened species that require special attention.

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It is expected that the two new bear cubs will find shelter and food in the high Andean forest to guarantee their survival over time.

The “Serankwa” and “Gaia” bears had not been recorded on camera traps since April 2022, making this new sighting even more significant. These females have demonstrated their ability to reproduce and raise healthy litters, reinforcing hope for a sustainable population of spectacled bears in the Huila wildlife.

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