Chagres National Park

Country/territory: Panama

IBA Criteria met: A1, A2, A3 (2007)
For more information about IBA criteria please click here

Area: 129,000 ha

Sociedad Audubon de Panamá

Site description
Chagres National Park protects the upper Chagres River watershed above Lake Alajuela (Madden), (5,000 ha), a reservoir that provides water for the operation of the Panama Canal, as well as drinking water and hydroelectric power for Panama City. In the Chagres basin, the park includes the Boquerón, Pequení, and Las Cascadas tributaries of the Chagres. North of the Chagres basin, it includes the upper watersheds of the Nombre de Dios, Viento Frio, Cuango, Culebra, and Mandinga Rivers, which flow directly into the Caribbean. The highest point is at Cerro Jefe (1,007 m) in the southeast. The historic Spanish colonial road, the Camino Real from Panama City to Portobelo and Nombre de Dios, passes through the park.

Key biodiversity
The globally threatened endemic Speckled Ant-shrike of the Darién Lowlands occurs in the foothills of the park. The globally near-threatened Great Curassow, Harpy Eagle, Russet-crowned Quail-Dove, and Blue-and-gold Tanager are also found, and the near-threatened Plumbeous Hawk and Crested Eagle probably also occur. Two active Harpy Eagle nests were found in the park in 1997. Many nationally threatened species, as well as many endemics of the Darién Lowlands and Darién Highlands EBAs, also occur.

Non-bird biodiversity: Mammals recorded or probably present include Water Opossum, Central American Woolly Opossum, Slaty Mouse Opossum, Giant Anteater, Silky Anteater, Northern Naked-tailed Armadillo, Geoff-roy’s Tamarin, Western Night Monkey, Central American Spider Monkey, Panamanian Spiny Pocket-Mouse, Capybara, Crab-eating Raccoon, Bush Dog, Olingo, Neotropical River Otter, Ocelot, Margay, Jaguarundi, Puma, Jaguar, and Baird’s Tapir. Reptiles and amphibians include the frogs and toads Atelopus limosus, Colosthetus flotator, C. inguinalis, Minyobates fulguritus, M. minutus, Phyllomedusa lemur, Eleutherodactylus gollmeri, E. museosus, and E. pardalis, the salamanders Bolitoglossa biseriata and B. schizodactyla, the lizards Sphaerodactylus lineolatus, Anadia vittata, Leposoma southi, Ptychoglossus festae, and Anolis poecilopus, and the snakes Rhadinaea sargenti, Urotheca fulviceps, and Micrurus stewarti (Ibáñez 1997c,d,e).

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2022) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Chagres National Park. Downloaded from on 30/06/2022.