SIAN KA’AN FACTS AND FIGURES

• Sian Ka’an Biosphere Reserve was established on January 20th 1986
• In December 1987, Sian Ka’an Biosphere Reserve was declared a World Heritage Property by UNESCO, thanks to its unique biodiversity and fascinating Mayan

History

• Sian Ka’an is part of UNESCO’s Man and Biosphere (MAB) program, which aims to improve the relationship between people and their environment
• The Biosphere Reserve covers 652,000 hectares – or 1.3 million acres – making it the largest protected area in the Mexican Caribbean and the largest coastal protected area in Mexico
• The Mesoamerican Barrier Reef is the second largest barrier reef in the world at 1300km
• Sian Ka'an is the third largest protected area in Mexico
• Sian Ka'an covers 10% of the State of Quintana Roo
• Sian Ka'an is about twise the size of Rode Island, USA

Ecosystem

• By 2015, 379 species of bird had been identified in the Reserve
• The area is also home to 115 species of mammals, 90 species of native bees, 47 species of dragonflies, 74 species of beetles, 276 species of crustaceans, 310 species of mosquitoes and 318 species of butterflies
• The barrier reef is made up of more than 84 species of coral, including the “brain coral” which can reach up to seven meters in diameter
• It is visited by hundreds of species of fish, including macabí, sharks, shad, bass, and palometa
• There are 1048 species of flora, including the chit palm, kuka, despeinada, siricote de playa, uva de mar, chacá or palo mulato, riñonina and water lily, as well as mahogany, cedar, rosewood, jícaro and pucté
• Visitors can expect to see creatures that are rarely found elsewhere, including manatees, four species of marine turtle, howler and spider monkeys, crocodiles, the rare Jabiru stork, jaguars, pumas, ocelots, pink flamingos, toucans and tapirs
• Sian Ka'an boast 150,000 hectares of deciduous and semi-evergreen forest
• The petens, which can grow up to 30 meters tall, are only found here, in Florida and in Cuba
• Sian Ka'an presents a variety of marine grass, inlets, mangroves, marshes and coastal and in-land lagoons

Climate

• The climate is tropical with summer rains
• In January, the average monthly temperature is 72°F, rising to 82°F in May
• Most of the rain falls between May and October, with September the wettest month

Population

• There are no indigenous groups within the Reserve
• Most of the population (about 1500 people) live in the fishing villages of Javier Rojo Gómez (Punta Allen) and Punta Herrero.