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Habitat Restoration

The Guanacaste Dry Forest Conservation Fund (GDFCF) was founded initially to channel donations for willing-seller land purchases to continue constructing the landscape-level protected area that is Área de Conservación Guanacaste (ACG) as we know it today. Early purchases focused on acquiring, typically, degraded land in the highly endangered Pacific tropical dry forest zone, leading to roughly 74,000 hectares now protected, the largest intact piece of recovering dry forest in Mesoamerica. However, as biological interdependency with the other two forest biomes became more apparent, especially with the advent of the DNA barcoding tool, it became increasingly necessary to expand and connect ACG protected areas eastward into the cloud forests and Caribbean rain forests to ensure that species could comfortably move between these biomes and adjust to the impacts of climate change. This awareness led to a steady effort to enlarge the area of protected habitat in the Caribbean rain forest. Today, GDFCF continues to add to the protected base of ACG as opportunities and funds allow the purchase of strategically important properties. While most properties have been donated to the government, GDFCF has ongoing biodiversity management responsibility on roughly 14% of the terrestrial land base of ACG. For some properties, we participate in Costa Rica's unique system of environmental service payments (Programa de Pago de Servicios Ambientales) and we work closely with ACG staff to facilitate police and fire protection and overall conservation management. Learn more about this history on the subpages: Expanding ACG and Land Management.

Cacao old growth

Old growth forest in Sector Cacao