Spanish Creek Wildlife Sanctuary (SCWS)
was declared on July 8th, 2002 and covers an area of 5,985
acres of lowland tropical forest.
The area forms a link with the Rio
Bravo Conservation and Management area, The Crooked
Tree Wildlife Sanctuary and The Community Baboon Sanctuary
and it is very important for the continuity of the
Biological Corridor in Northern Belize.
Rancho Dolores Environment and Development Group
(RDEDG) is presently seeking co-management for the
sanctuary from the Forest Department. This area has
limited documentation on the Biodiversity of the area
. But the RDEDG has received funding from the Mesoamerican
Biological Corridor Project (MBCP) and the the Protected
Areas Conservation Trust (PACT) to carry out a Rapid
Ecological Assessment (REA). This REA was being carried
out by Jan Meerman and his team and it is anticipated
that this project (funded by the MBCP & PACT)
can assist in the preparation of a management plan
for this part of the Belize Biological Corridor.
This REA was completed in 2004. A geological survey
has been carried out by Brian Holland of Belize
Minerals Ltd. and has revealed some interesting
features such as a series of springs located on a
Ecosystem and vegetation surveys have been carried
out following a now standard methodology (see
Mayflower page for details of this methodology).
Based on this an ecosystem map has been prepared for
Interesting findings include the tree Christiana
africana (Tiliaceae) a species with a disjunct
distribution over Africa, Central and South America.
In Belize the tree is certainly uncommon if not rare.
The sanctuary is still rich in wildlife. Particularly
Mexican Black Howler Monkeys are frequently heard
and even seen. Central American Tapir, White-lipped
Peccary, Collared Peccary, Red Brocket Deer, Jaguar
and Puma use the sanctuary as part of their range.
In the river (Spanish Creek) 25 fish species have been
identified. One of these is the recently introduced Tilapia.
Nothing is known about the impact of the Tilapia on this
aquatic ecosystem. Morelet's Crocodiles also occur in the
river but the endangered Hickatee or Central American River
Turtle (Dermatemys mawii) appears to have become
A management plan was prepared in 2015
The final reports are available for download:
Main REA report
(pdf: 1,678 kb)
(pdf: 739 kb)
Management Plan 2016-2021 (pdf: 5,280 kb)
the Spanish Creek Website or if this does not work try
Toucan Trail site
Contact the Rancho Dolores Environmental Center at (501)
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