In the Andean mountains deep in the Zongo Valley of Bolivia, a week-long mission took place in 2017. It was organized and led by Conservation International, a not-for-profit organization of environmental groups. They found more than 1000 species in the mountain forests. Among them, over 20 were new-founds. The Andean mountain mission was part of Conservation International’s Rapid Assessment Program. They assemble teams to heal the ecosystem’s health worldwide.
Andean Mountains Expedition:
The survey lasted for over fourteen days. The “SWAT Team” included biologists and other team members hiking throughout the valley and high Andean mountains, deep forests. The Zongo Valley is known for its biodiverse region, which is rich to its core, littered with many species of both flora and fauna. The hike’s main objective was to study the ecosystem while locating health issues in the natural valley. La Paz is the capital city. The valley sits close to the city.
“Cloud forests” is a popular name for the mountain forests. It stands 10,000 feet over the sea level. The perseverance is hence, high. The steep planes of the rugged Andean mountains is where the forests lay. This also helps understand how so many species have been undiscovered, and found around the cold waves.
New Species Found In The Andean Mountains:
The expedition led to several discoveries. A viper is one of them. Andean mountain Fer-de-Lance is the snake’s name. They are highly venomous pit species. The other newly found fauna is the Bolivian-Flag Snake. It comes in green, red, and yellow colors. One of them is also a tiny frog. As a result, the species are now known as the Lilliputian Frog. It is 10mm in length. They also found newer species of butterflies on the mountains
In Flora, the team found a new species of the Orchids. Adder’s Mouth is the flower’s name. This plant has several parts that mimic insects, producing one leaf up the stem. The leaf is oval in shape and smooth and glossy. Thus, it attracts insects and successfully transfers pollen to the flowers. A newer found bamboo is also available in the forests. A unique discovery is what they called it. But people from the Andean mountains have already been using it for years. They also use it to create a musical instrument. Zamponas is it’s name.
Extinct Species Rediscovered:
Along with discoveries already been made but considered extinct, they found many species for the first time. Extinct had become the Satyr Butterfly, for over ninety-eight years. They feed on rotten fruits. The devil-eyed frog is another species seen after an absence of twenty years. Due to climate change, many of these animals are moving to higher grounds, on the Andean Mountains.
Andean Mountain’s Expedition Leader’s Statement:
Trond Larsen, the leader of the mission, spoke about the experience. He said the sounds in the Andean mountain valley consist of pure nature— birds, waterfalls, etc. Hence, he mentioned how important it is to protect La Paz to “conserve the surrounding nature.”