Sumidero Canyon is a deep natural canyon located just north of the city of Chiapa de Corzo in the state of Chiapas, in southern Mexico. The canyon's creation began around the same time as the Grand Canyon in the U. S. state of Arizona, by a crack in the area's crust and subsequent erosion by the Grijalva River, which still runs through it. Sumidero Canyon has vertical walls which reach as high as 1,000 metres, with the river turning up to 90 degrees during the 13-kilometre length of the narrow passage; the canyon is surrounded by the Sumidero Canyon National Park, a federally protected natural area of Mexico which extends for 21,789 hectares over four municipalities of the state of Chiapas. This park is administered by the National Commission of Protected Natural Areas. Most of the vegetation in the park is low- to medium-height deciduous rainforest, with small areas of mixed pine-oak forest and grassland. At the north end of the canyon is the Chicoasén Dam and its artificial reservoir, one of several on the Grijalva River, important for water storage and the generation of hydroelectric power in the region.
The canyon and national park is the second most important tourist site in Chiapas, drawing Mexican visitors who see the canyon from boats which embark on the river from Chiapa de Corzo. The park borders Tuxtla Gutiérrez, the state's largest city, which has caused problems with human encroachment and settlement on park land. More the urban areas and logging industries upstream from the canyon have caused serious pollution problems, with up to 5000 tons of solid waste extracted from the Grijalva River each year; this waste tends to build up in the canyon because of its narrowness, the convergence of water flows and the presence of the Chicoasén Dam. The Sumidero Canyon was formed by cracks in the earth's crust along with erosion by the Grijalva River, which still flows through it; the process of its formation began about 35 million years ago, making the Sumidero contemporary with the Grand Canyon on the Colorado River. The Grijalva is the main water system in the area, beginning in the Cuchumatanes in neighboring Guatemala.
The river flows through Chiapas, including the 13-km length of the canyon, from south to north on to Tabasco before it empties into the Usumacinta River. This river basin is one of the two most important in Chiapas, one of the most important in Mexico with a total river length of 766 kilometres, draining an area of 7,940 square kilometres, with an average flow of about forty million cubic meters. In addition to the Grijalva, there are other flows of water in the area in and around the canyon, many of which are seasonal; these consist of streams, some of which form waterfalls on the canyon's sides, underground movements which have created caves and karst formations. The last important water formation in the area is the manmade reservoir of the Chicoasén Dam; the canyon proper is narrow, characterized by vertical walls. As the gap changes direction as much as 90 degrees in places, it separates the Meseta de las Animas mesa in the west from the Meseta de Ixtapa mesa in the east; the width of the canyon varies from 1 to 2 kilometres.
Most of the canyon's walls are between 200 and 700 metres high, reaching 1,000 metres at their highest point. These walls expose a long process of disturbance in the Earth's crust with layers of limestone from the Upper Mesozoic, which contain fossils of marine creatures. During the Mesocretac Period, there was an elevation of ocean floor which formed much of the mountains of the area; the interior of the canyon has thirty rapids, five waterfalls, three beaches, two freshwater springs and a cofferdam three meters wide. The canyon contains endangered and threatened species such as the Central American river turtle and the American crocodile, which can be seen on the riverbanks; the walls of the canyon contain rock formations and other notable features. The best known of the area's caves is the Cueva de Colores; this cave gets its name from the filtration of magnesium and other minerals which form colors on the walls shades of pink. It contains an image of the Virgin of Guadalupe inside surrounded by fresh flowers and burning candles left by visitors.
The Cueva de Silencio is so named because of a lack of echo or any other kind of resonance in its interior. In another small cave, there is a stalactite called the Caballito de Mar or "Seahorse" after its shape. Of the various seasonal waterfalls, the best known is the Árbol de Navidad; the "branches" of the Árbol are made by deposits from the waterfall. During the rainy season, when the waterfall is active, the water and the light change the colors of the “branches” and make the formation stand out; the park was a candidate in 2009 as one of the Seven New Natural Wonders of the World. Despite its biological and cultural diversity, there have been few studies performed in the park area. For this reason, there is a lack of information about species and water flow. There is relatively little information about how human activities affect the park; as the park is located in the Central Valley of Chiapas and borders the Northern Mountains region, altitudes vary from 600 metres above sea level in the municipality of Chiapa de Corzo to 1,200 metres above sea level at the El Roblar lookout point.
This geography produces a channel for air flow from northwest to southeast as well as three main climates based on the Köeppen system as modified for Mexico. These are hot and dry (where airflow is b
The Arizona woodpecker is a woodpecker native to southern Arizona and New Mexico and the Sierra Madre Occidental of western Mexico. The species northernmost range in southeastern Arizona, extreme southwestern New Mexico, northern Sonora is the region of the Madrean Sky Islands, a region of higher Sonoran Desert mountain ranges; this species is known in older field guides as a subspecies of Strickland's woodpecker. The 42nd supplement of the American Ornithologists Union checklist split Strickland's woodpecker into two species: the northern population in the Sierra Madre Occidental region and the southern population in central Mexico; some taxonomic authorities, including the American Ornithological Society, continue to place this species in the genus Picoides. Arizona woodpeckers are nearly identical to Strickland's woodpeckers, growing to be about 7 to 8 inches in length, their plumage is brown and white in coloration, brown on top with a dark rump with white underparts speckled with brown spots.
Arizona woodpeckers have white bars on their wings, have two white stripes across their face which join with another white bar on their neck. Male Arizona woodpeckers have a red patch on the nape of their head, lacking on females; the call of the Arizona woodpecker is a sharp, squeaky keech, this species gives a rattle call of descending, grating notes. "Picoides arizonae". Integrated Taxonomic Information System. Retrieved 27 February 2006. Sibley, David Allen; the Sibley Field Guide to Birds of Western North America, ISBN 0-679-45121-8 Arizona woodpecker at AviBase Arizona woodpecker at eNature Arizona woodpecker at HikeArizona. COM Arizona woodpecker at USGS Arizona woodpecker photo gallery VIREO Phote-High Res.
The coyote, Canis latrans, is a canine native to North America. It is smaller than its close relative, the gray wolf, smaller than the related eastern wolf and red wolf, it fills much of the same ecological niche as the golden jackal does in Eurasia, though it is larger and more predatory, is sometimes called the American jackal by zoologists. The coyote is listed as least concern by the International Union for Conservation of Nature due to its wide distribution and abundance throughout North America, southwards through Mexico, into Central America; the species is able to adapt to and expand into environments modified by humans. It is enlarging its range, with coyotes moving into urban areas in the Eastern U. S. and was sighted in eastern Panama for the first time in 2013. As of 2005, 19 coyote subspecies are recognized; the average male weighs the average female 7 to 18 kg. Their fur color is predominantly light gray and red or fulvous interspersed with black and white, though it varies somewhat with geography.
It is flexible in social organization, living either in a family unit or in loosely knit packs of unrelated individuals. It has a varied diet consisting of animal meat, including deer, hares, birds, amphibians and invertebrates, though it may eat fruits and vegetables on occasion, its characteristic vocalization is a howl made by solitary individuals. Humans are the coyote's greatest threat, followed by gray wolves. In spite of this, coyotes sometimes mate with gray, eastern, or red wolves, producing "coywolf" hybrids. In the northeastern United States and eastern Canada, the eastern coyote is the result of various historical and recent matings with various types of wolves. Genetic studies show that most North American wolves contain some level of coyote DNA; the coyote is a prominent character in Native American folklore in the Southwestern United States and Mexico depicted as a trickster that alternately assumes the form of an actual coyote or a man. As with other trickster figures, the coyote uses deception and humor to rebel against social conventions.
The animal was respected in Mesoamerican cosmology as a symbol of military might. After the European colonization of the Americas, it was reviled in Anglo-American culture as a cowardly and untrustworthy animal. Unlike wolves, which have undergone an improvement of their public image, attitudes towards the coyote remain negative. Coyote males average 8 to 20 kg in weight, while females average 7 to 18 kg, though size varies geographically. Northern subspecies, which average 18 kg, tend to grow larger than the southern subspecies of Mexico, which average 11.5 kg. Body length ranges on average from 1.0 to 1.35 m, tail length 40 cm, with females being shorter in both body length and height. The largest coyote on record was a male killed near Afton, Wyoming, on November 19, 1937, which measured 1.5 m from nose to tail, weighed 34 kg. Scent glands are a bluish-black color; the color and texture of the coyote's fur varies somewhat geographically. The hair's predominant color is light gray and red or fulvous, interspersed around the body with black and white.
Coyotes living at high elevations tend to have more black and gray shades than their desert-dwelling counterparts, which are more fulvous or whitish-gray. The coyote's fur consists of soft underfur and long, coarse guard hairs; the fur of northern subspecies is longer and denser than in southern forms, with the fur of some Mexican and Central American forms being hispid. Adult coyotes have a sable coat color, dark neonatal coat color, bushy tail with an active supracaudal gland, a white facial mask. Albinism is rare in coyotes; the coyote is smaller than the gray wolf, but has longer ears and a larger braincase, as well as a thinner frame and muzzle. The scent glands are the same color, its fur color variation is much less varied than that of a wolf. The coyote carries its tail downwards when running or walking, rather than horizontally as the wolf does. Coyote tracks can be distinguished from those of dogs by less rounded shape. Unlike dogs, the upper canines of coyotes extend past the mental foramina.
At the time of the European colonization of the Americas, coyotes were confined to open plains and arid regions of the western half of the continent. In early post-Columbian historical records, distinguishing between coyotes and wolves is difficult. One record from 1750 in Kaskaskia, written by a local priest, noted that the "wolves" encountered there were smaller and less daring than European wolves. Another account from the early 1800s in Edwards County mentioned wolves howling at night, though these were coyotes; this species was encountered several times during the Lewis and Clark Expedition, though it was well known to European traders on the upper Missouri. Lewis, writing on 5 May 1805, in northeastern Montana, described the coyote in these terms: The small woolf or burrowing dog of the prairies are the inhabitants invariably of the open plains.
A national park is a park in use for conservation purposes. It is a reserve of natural, semi-natural, or developed land that a sovereign state declares or owns. Although individual nations designate their own national parks differently, there is a common idea: the conservation of'wild nature' for posterity and as a symbol of national pride. An international organization, the International Union for Conservation of Nature, its World Commission on Protected Areas, has defined "National Park" as its Category II type of protected areas. While this type of national park had been proposed the United States established the first "public park or pleasuring-ground for the benefit and enjoyment of the people", Yellowstone National Park, in 1872. Although Yellowstone was not termed a "national park" in its establishing law, it was always termed such in practice and is held to be the first and oldest national park in the world. However, the Tobago Main Ridge Forest Reserve, the area surrounding Bogd Khan Uul Mountain are seen as the oldest protected areas, predating Yellowstone by nearly a century.
The first area to use "national park" in its creation legislation was the U. S.'s Mackinac, in 1875. Australia's Royal National Park, established in 1879, was the world's third official national park. In 1895 ownership of Mackinac National Park was transferred to the State of Michigan as a state park and national park status was lost; as a result, Australia's Royal National Park is by some considerations the second oldest national park now in existence. Canada established Parks Canada in 1911, becoming the world's first national service dedicated to protecting and presenting natural and historical treasures; the largest national park in the world meeting the IUCN definition is the Northeast Greenland National Park, established in 1974. According to the IUCN, 6,555 national parks worldwide met its criteria in 2006. IUCN is still discussing the parameters of defining a national park. National parks are always open to visitors. Most national parks provide outdoor recreation and camping opportunities as well as classes designed to educate the public on the importance of conservation and the natural wonders of the land in which the national park is located.
In 1969, the IUCN declared a national park to be a large area with the following defining characteristics: One or several ecosystems not materially altered by human exploitation and occupation, where plant and animal species, geomorphological sites and habitats are of special scientific and recreational interest or which contain a natural landscape of great beauty. In 1971, these criteria were further expanded upon leading to more clear and defined benchmarks to evaluate a national park; these include: Minimum size of 1,000 hectares within zones in which protection of nature takes precedence Statutory legal protection Budget and staff sufficient to provide sufficient effective protection Prohibition of exploitation of natural resources qualified by such activities as sport, fishing, the need for management, etc. While the term national park is now defined by the IUCN, many protected areas in many countries are called national park when they correspond to other categories of the IUCN Protected Area Management Definition, for example: Swiss National Park, Switzerland: IUCN Ia - Strict Nature Reserve Everglades National Park, United States: IUCN Ib - Wilderness Area Victoria Falls National Park, Zimbabwe: IUCN III - National Monument Vitosha National Park, Bulgaria: IUCN IV - Habitat Management Area New Forest National Park, United Kingdom: IUCN V - Protected Landscape Etniko Ygrotopiko Parko Delta Evrou, Greece: IUCN VI - Managed Resource Protected AreaWhile national parks are understood to be administered by national governments, in Australia national parks are run by state governments and predate the Federation of Australia.
In Canada, there are both national parks operated by the federal government and provincial or territorial parks operated by the provincial and territorial governments, although nearly all are still national parks by the IUCN definition. In many countries, including Indonesia, the Netherlands, the United Kingdom, national parks do not adhere to the IUCN definition, while some areas which adhere to the IUCN definition are not designated as national parks. In 1810, the English poet William Wordsworth described the Lake District as a sort of national property, in which every man has a right and interest who has an eye to perceive and a heart to enjoy; the painter George Catlin, in his travels through the American West, wrote during the 1830s that the Native Americans in the United States might be preserved...in a magnificent park... A nation's Park, containing man and beast, in all the wild and freshness of their nature's beauty! The first effort by the U. S. Federal government to set aside such protected lands was on 20 April 1832, when President Andrew Jackson signed legislation that the 22nd United States Congress had enacted to set aside four sections of land around what is now Hot Springs, Arkansas, to protect the natural, thermal springs and adjoining mountainsides for the futur
The ladder-backed woodpecker is a North American woodpecker. Some taxonomic authorities, including the American Ornithological Society, continue to place this species in the genus Picoides; the ladder-backed woodpecker is common in dry brushy areas and thickets and has a rather large range. The species can be found year-round over the southwestern United States, most of Mexico, locally in Central America as far south as Nicaragua; the ladder-backed woodpecker is a small woodpecker about 16.5 to 19 cm in length. It is colored black and white, with a barred pattern on its back and wings resembling the rungs of a ladder, its rump is speckled with black, as flanks. Southern populations have distinctly smaller bills. Adult males have a red crown patch, smaller in immatures and lacking in adult females; the ladder-backed woodpecker is similar in appearance to Nuttall's woodpecker, but has much less black on its head and upper back, the range of the two species only intersects a minimal amount in southern California and northern Baja California.
Hybrids are known. Ladder-backed woodpeckers nest in cavities excavated from tree trunks, or in more arid environments a large cactus will do; the female lays between 7 eggs, which are plain white. The eggs are incubated by both sexes. Like most other woodpeckers the ladder-backed woodpecker bores into tree-trunks with its chisel-like bill to hunt for insects and their larva, but it feeds on fruit produced by cacti. Howell, Steve N. G.. A Guide to the Birds of Mexico and Northern Central America. Oxford University Press. ISBN 0-19-854012-4. Ladder-backed woodpecker, a bibliographic resource
Chihuahua the Free and Sovereign State of Chihuahua, is one of the 31 states of Mexico. It is located in Northwestern Mexico and is bordered by the states of Sonora to the west, Sinaloa to the southwest, Durango to the south, Coahuila to the east. To the north and northeast, it has a long border with the U. S. adjacent to the U. S. states of New Texas. Its capital city is Chihuahua City. Although Chihuahua is identified with the Chihuahuan Desert for namesake, it has more forests than any other state in Mexico, with the exception of Durango. Due to its variant climate, the state has a large variety of flora; the state is characterized by rugged mountainous terrain and wide river valleys. The Sierra Madre Occidental mountain range, part of the continental spine that includes the Rocky Mountains, dominates the state's terrain and is home to the state's greatest attraction, Las Barrancas del Cobre, or Copper Canyon, a canyon system larger and deeper than the Grand Canyon. On the slope of the Sierra Madre Occidental mountains, there are vast prairies of short yellow grass, the source of the bulk of the state's agricultural production.
Most of the inhabitants live along the Conchos River Valley. The etymology of the name Chihuahua has long been disputed by linguists; the most accepted theory explains that the name was derived from the Nahuatl language meaning "The place where the water of the rivers meet". Chihuahua is the largest state in Mexico by area, with an area of 247,455 square kilometres, it is larger than the United Kingdom and smaller than Wyoming, tenth US state in area; the state is known under the nickname El Estado Grande. Chihuahua has a diversified state economy; the three most important economic centers in the state are: Ciudad Juárez, an international manufacturing center. Today Chihuahua serves as an important commercial route prospering from billions of dollars from international trade as a result of NAFTA. On the other hand the state suffers the fallout of illicit trade and activities at the border; the earliest evidence of human inhabitants of modern day Chihuahua was discovered in the area of Samalayuca and Rancho Colorado.
Clovis points have been found in northeastern Chihuahua that have been dated from 12,000 BC to 7000 BC. It is thought. Inhabitants of the state developed farming with the domestication of corn. An archeological site in northern Chihuahua known as Cerro Juanaqueña revealed squash cultivation, irrigation techniques, ceramic artifacts dating to around 2000 BC. Between AD 300 and 1300 in the northern part of the state along the wide, fertile valley on the San Miguel River the Casas Grandes culture developed into an advanced civilization; the Casas Grandes civilization is part of a major prehistoric archaeological culture known as Mogollon, related to the Ancestral Pueblo culture. Paquime was the center of the Casas Grandes civilization. Extensive archaeological evidence shows commerce and hunting at Paquime and Cuarenta Casas. La Cueva De Las Ventanas, a series of cliff dwellings along an important trade route, Las Jarillas Cave scrambled along the canyons of the Sierra Madre in Northwestern Chihuahua date between AD 1205 and 1260 and belong to the Paquimé culture.
Cuarenta Casas is thought to have been a branch settlement from Paquime to protect the trade route from attack. Archaeologists believe the civilization began to decline during the 13th century and by the 15th century the inhabitants of Paquime sought refuge in the Sierra Madre Occidental while others are thought to have emigrated north and joined the Ancestral Pueblo peoples. According to anthropologist current natives tribes are descendants of the Casas Grandes culture. During the 14th century in the northeastern part of the state nomad tribes by the name of Jornado hunted bison along the Rio Grande; when the Spanish explorers reached this area they found their descendants and Manso tribes. In the southern part of the state, in a region known as Aridoamerica, Chichimeca people survived by hunting and farming between AD 300 and 1300; the Chichimeca are the ancestors of the Tepehuan people. Nueva Vizcaya was the first province of northern New Spain to be explored and settled by the Spanish. Around 1528, a group of Spaniard explorers, led by Álvar Núñez Cabeza de Vaca, first entered the territory of what is now Chihuahua.
The conquest of the territory lasted nearly one century and encountered fierce resistance from the Conchos tribe, but the desire of the Spanish Crown to transform the region into a bustling mining center led to a strong strategy to control the area. In 1562 Francisco de Ibarra headed a personal expedition in search of the mythical cities of Cibola and Quivira. Francisco de Ibarra is thought to have been the first European to see the ruins of Paquime. In 1564 Rodrigo de Río de Loza, a lieutenant under Francisco de Ibarra, stayed behind after the expedition and found gold at the foot of the mountains of the Sierra Madre Occidental.
Arrecifes de Cozumel National Park
The Arrecifes de Cozumel National Park is off the coast of the island of Cozumel in the state of Quintana Roo, Mexico. The Cozumel reef system is part of the Mesoamerican Barrier Reef System, the second largest coral reef system in the world. Though the entire island of Cozumel is surrounded by coral reefs, the park only encompasses the reefs on the south side of the island, it begins just south of the International Pier and continues down and around Punta Sur and up just a small portion of the east side of the island. The park is located in the municipality of Cozumel in the state of Mexico, it is about 20 kilometers off the east coast of the Yucatán Peninsula in the Caribbean Sea. On July 19, 1996, under the direction of president Ernesto Zedillo Ponce de León, Arrecifes de Cozumel was declared a National Marine Park; the park size is 120 square kilometres. Cozumel is home to the Cozumel Splendid toadfish, listed as vulnerable by IUCN and is endemic to the reefs surrounding the island; the park has several species that are under some degree of protection, including sea turtles, the Queen Conch, black coral.
List of reefs