Friday, December 5, 2008

National Reservation of Salinas and Aguada Blanca

Location: Department of Arequipa, provinces of Caylloma and Arequipa.

Area: 336,000 hectares.

Creation: August 1979.

Conservation and protection unit of the flora and fauna, beautiful landscapes, geologic formations of the area and preservation of highland species.

Aguada Blanca Dam is located behind Misti Volcano (according to the city of Arequipa), in an extensive flatness at 4,000 meters above sea level (13,123 feet). This dam forms a great artificial lake with the waters of Blanco River. Behind the Pichupichu Volcano also exists the Salinas Lagoon. Both are places where a great population of birds rest, among those one of the most important are the "parihuanas" flamingos (Phoeneicopterux Tuber) keeping a close relation with the migration of the Reservation of the Mejía Lagoons.

Inside this reservation is located Pampa Cañahuas, almost behind the Chachani Volcano, where the tarucas (Hippocamelus Antisiencis) are protected (tarucas are deers of a small size that are in a vulnerable situation). There are also great quantity of vicuñas in wild life.

The vicuña (Vicugna Vicugna) is a mammalian camalidae, that inhabits the high mountains of the Andes. It has 95 cm height and 55 kilos weight on the average, long neck and elegant figure. It is covered with a short frizzy wool (reddish wheat color) of extraordinary quality. It lives up to 15 years and can be tamed.

It was in extinction danger due to their merciless hunt. Their wool is the finest textile fiber in the world, very well appreciated in the international market. It is represented in the National Shield of Peru like the symbol of the wealth of the animal kingdom.

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