The Foundation Ecosistemas Secos de Colombia
We are a non-profit, non-governmental organization established in August of 2003. The foundation comprises an interdisciplinary group of researchers with a shared interest in expanding knowledge and conservation of the dry ecosystems in Colombia. We work in association with government and non-governmental institutions, both national and foreign; we count with a vast experience in developing biological and socio-economic knowledge adapted to conservation efforts. We are leaders in planning processes for the establishment of regional protected areas, territorial ordering and management of dry ecosystems in the Caribbean region and inter-Andean valleys. We have led conservation projects based on rural community participation in the territories where we make our work, and we have developed research on diversity, restoring, monitoring, and floral and faunal inventories
What do we do and why do we do it?
In the Neotropics, dry forests (TdF) are considered high conservation priority ecosystems. In these ecosystems, there are plant and animal species that resist high temperatures and prolonged drought seasons, which make these life forms unique and geographically restricted. Such is the case of the cotton-top tamarin (Saguinus oedipus), which is found only in the Caribbean region of Colombia and is critically endangered due to habitat loss and increasing human settling in the zones where it is found. This primate coexists with and depends on, more than one hundred plant species typical of the tropical dry forest. The DEC Foundation recognizes the economic and cultural relationship of communities with their territories and the role they play in conservation processes. Because of this, all our projects actively involve social actors in the places where the foundation does its work, thus generating a dialogue of knowledge that allows fulfilling the objectives of each project, enhancing the social appropriation of processes.
How do we do it?
The research studies we develop are led by interdisciplinary teams, according to the needs of each project. Involved professionals include biologists, sociologists, ecologists, and forestry engineers. All our professionals are well trained in conservation, biodiversity inventories, sustainable use, botany and work with communities. The foundation has four research lines: environmental management and sustainable use, Biodiversity and conservation, social management and development, and Cooperation and Training.
We promote the conservation, restoration and sustainable management of natural ecosystems, with particular interest on the dry ecosystems of Colombia. We intend to contribute by improving the life quality of communities within the influence areas of ecosystems, through research, conservation programs and sustainable use of biodiversity.
The Dry Ecosystems of Colombia Foundation aims to be a leader in generating information on our ecosystems and to create participation scenarios for local communities, thus guarantying their development, as well as the protection and sustainable management of biological diversity in our country, providing high-quality standard services.