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Psittacanthus minor (Loranthaceae)
Psittacanthus minor (Loranthaceae) endemic to the Sébaco Valley, central Nicaragua


Nicaragua is a key Central American nation situated between Costa Rica and Honduras. With limited financial resources, the country is struggling against extreme pressures of population growth and development. About half of its population of approximately five million lives in poverty, and the country’s per capita gross domestic product is the second lowest in the Western Hemisphere. Nicaragua urgently needs to develop scientifically-based conservation priorities that will enable it to manage its natural resources sustainably.

The Center for Conservation and Sustainable Development (CCSD) has a unique opportunity to make a major contribution to the economic, cultural, and social well-being of Nicaragua. Using the Flora de Nicaragua and its associated database, CCSD is developing a conservation action plan that addresses the practical and scientific issues critical to the survival of many of the nation’s gravely threatened plants and of entire ecosystems. The four-volume Flora (the seed plants published in 2001 and the ferns in 2009) and the database are the result of 30 years of research by the Missouri Botanical Garden.

Sida repens, Serranías de Amerrisque, central Nicaragua
Sida repens,
Serranías de Amerrisque, central Nicaragua
Licaria triandra, Serranías de Amerrisque, central Nicaragua
Licaria triandra,
Serranías de Amerrisque, central Nicaragua

CCSD’s key programs in Nicaragua include:

  • A species-by-species evaluation of all plant species in the Flora to determine their conservation status and to identify the most threatened species
  • For the most at-risk species, completion of a spatial analysis, including evaluation of the effects of climate change and land use patterns, to help set priorities for areas now protected and for the establishment of potential additional conservation sites
  • A comprehensive study of the dynamic interaction among humans, forest structure,
    and animal distribution in the Bosawás Biosphere Reserve of northeastern Nicaragua,
    focusing in particular on the floral and faunal structure of areas used for hunting and
    agriculture as compared to the undisturbed conservation areas. The project aims
    ultimately to prepare a management plan for the reserve.
  • For more information, contact
    Olga Martha Montiel
    W.D. Stevens

    Learn more about the Missouri Botanical Garden’s program in Mesoamerica

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    Director, CCSD, Missouri Botanical Garden, P.O. Box 299, St. Louis, MO 63166 Phone: (314) 577-0871 © 2014