The Valdivian forests on the west coast of southern Chile, and stretching into parts of Argentina, are the only temperate rainforests in South America and the second largest in the world.
They are home to the alerce tree (Fitzroya cupressoides
) - the southern hemisphere’s equivalent of the ancient redwood of the Pacific Northwest - which can reach heights of 115m and live for more than 3,000 years, and the endemic monkey puzzle tree (Araucaria araucana
These native forests harbour an incredible wealth of wildlife
, including the magellanic woodpecker
), South America's largest woodpecker, and the pudu (Pudu pudu
), one of the world's smallest deer.
But the Valdivian forests - and the species that live there - are threatened by intensive logging and expansion of timber plantations
WWF is working to confront these threats by developing conservation projects with local and indigenous communities
, collaborating with the private sector to promote sustainable business practices
, and ensuring that government regulations are aimed at protecting people and nature.
With 40% of the native forest remaining, there is still an opportunity to ensure the long-term health of this ancient land.