Uruguay: Developing the Laguna de Rocha WHSRN Site Management Plan

Written by Meredith Gutowski/WHSRN

Laguna de Rocha, a WHSRN Site of Regional Importance on the east coast of Uruguay, is a critical wintering area for 6.6% of the total biogeographic population of Buff-breasted Sandpiper (Tryngites subruficollis). This site is part of the National Protected Areas System and provides stopover and wintering habitat for several other migratory bird species of conservation concern.

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Buff-breasted Sandpiper, with flag and color-bands, at Laguna de Rocha, Uruguay. © Joaquín Aldabe

Partners are currently working on developing the design and implementation of a Management Plan that allows for productive development that is compatible with maintaining the ecological character of this valuable protected area. To help advance the effort, the Manomet Center for Conservation Sciences and the Canadian Wildlife Service (CWS) have agreed to provide financial support to Aves Uruguay, a nongovernmental bird conservation organization, to collect the data needed to ensure that shorebirds are adequately addressed in the future plan. Aves Uruguay is generating updated information about shorebirds in the area and working to build local capacity for conservation. “The idea is to set the stage for action,” explains Joaquín Aldabe, Director of Conservation for Aves Uruguay.

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Laguna de Rocha WHSRN Site, located on the east coast of Uruguay, is part of the country’s National Protected Areas System.

The activities supported by Manomet and CWS include applying the WHSRN Site Assessment Tool; publishing and distributing a training manual about the shorebirds of Laguna de Rocha; conducting a series of informative workshops for local stakeholders; continuing a participatory monitoring system for Buff-breasted Sandpipers; and providing assistance to livestock owners about habitat management practices.

For more information, please contact Joaquín Aldabe (joaquin@aldabe.org), Aves Uruguay, or Diego Luna Quevedo (diego.luna@manomet.org), Southern Cone Program Coordinator, the Manomet Center for Conservation Sciences.

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