The Magallanes and Chilean Antarctic Region joins the celebration of World Wetlands Day through an activity organized by the Regional Ministerial Secretary for the Environment and the Illustrious Municipality of Primavera.
The activity that takes place this Tuesday, February 1, includes the participation of the Cerro Sombrero community in a conference and a visit to the Bahía Lomas Wetland.
World Wetlands Day is celebrated on February 2 of each year in commemoration of the date the Convention on Wetlands of International Importance, called the Ramsar Convention, was adopted. This year marks the 40th anniversary of the international treaty that serves as a framework for national action and international cooperation for the conservation and wise use of wetlands and their resources.
Bahía Lomas, located at the eastern mouth of the Strait of Magellan, on the north coast of the Island of Tierra del Fuego, Spring Commune, is a coastal marine wetland, and is the southernmost Ramsar site in the country. This site is one of the most important areas for shorebirds in South America, and is home to a high concentration of migratory birds. This situation has led to Bahía Lomas being prioritized as a conservation site in Chile, promoting its inclusion in the Ramsar List of Wetlands of International Importance and in the Hemispheric Network of Shorebird Reserves. Currently, the Ministry of the Environment is coordinating the development of the Management Plan for the Ramsar Bahía Lomas Site, an instrument that will allow effective management of the biological diversity of this internationally important wetland.
One of the main characteristics of Bahía Lomas is its wide range of tidal variation and its low slope, which allows the existence of a tidal plain that exceeds 7 km wide, being the most extensive in Chile, with similar ones in South America , only in San Sebastián Bay in Tierra del Fuego, Argentina. This characteristic allows it to be the most important wintering area of the Arctic sandpiper, and habitat for other species of birds such as the straight-billed curlew, the white-backed sandpiper, the double-collared plover, the Magellan plover and the southern pilpilén.
The celebration of World Wetlands Day in Bahía Lomas by the Cerro Sombrero Community is possible thanks to the Municipality of Primavera, which has actively participated in the conservation initiatives of this Site; to the logistical support of the National Petroleum Company, ENAP, through its Program for the Rational Use of Wetlands, and thanks to the assistance of Ricardo Matus, who has studied the birds present in the wetland for several years.