Veracruz moist forests

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The Veracruz moist forests are an ecoregion, in the tropical and subtropical moist broadleaf forest biome, in eastern Mexico.


The Veracruz moist forests cover an area of 69,101 km2 (26,680 sq mi), occupying a portion of Mexico's Gulf Coastal Plain between the Sierra Madre Oriental and the Gulf of Mexico. The forests extend from southern Tamaulipas state across northern Veracruz, eastern San Luis Potosí, and portions of eastern Hidalgo and northeastern Puebla.

To the north, the forests transition to the dry lowland Tamaulipan mezquital and the upland Tamaulipan matorral. To the east, the Sierra Madre Oriental pine-oak forests occupy the higher elevations of the Sierra Madre Oriental. South of the gap where the Panuco River cuts through the Sierra Madre, the Veracruz montane forests and Oaxacan montane forests occupy middle slopes of the Sierra. The Veracruz dry forests separate the Veracruz moist forests from the Petén-Veracruz moist forests further south.

The northernmost extension of the Veracruz moist forests occurs in the El Cielo Biosphere and the Sierra de Tamaulipas at a latitude of about 23° 20′ degrees north.[1]


The climate of the region is tropical and humid, with rains during seven months of the year and mild variation in temperature. Average annual rainfall is 1,100–1,600 mm (43–63 in).


The canopy of this ecoregion is characterized by trees reaching a height of up to 30 m (98 ft), such as Mayan breadnut (Brosimum alicastrum), sapodilla (Manilkara zapota), rosadillo (Celtis monoica), Bursera simaruba, Dendropanax arboreus, and Sideroxylon capiri. The southern parts of the ecoregion feature mahogany (Swietenia macrophylla), Manilkara zapota, Bernoullia flammea, and Astronium graveolens.[2]


Endemic birds include the red-crowned amazon (Amazona viridigenalis), Tamaulipas crow (Corvus imparatus), Altamira yellowthroat (Geothlypis flavovelata), and crimson-collared grosbeak (Rhodothraupis celaeno). Two rodent species, the El Carrizo deer mouse (Peromyscus ochraventer) and the Tamaulipan woodrat (Neotoma angustapalata), are also endemic.[2]


Conservation and threats[edit]

The forests have been heavily altered by human activity, so that only a few enclaves of mature forest remain. Forests have been cleared for timber harvesting, agriculture, and grazing, and much of the original forest has been replaced with scrubland or secondary forest.

El Cielo Biosphere Reserve in southern Tamaulipas is the only protected area in the ecoregion.


  1. ^ "Veracruz Moist Forests", accessed 18 Dec 2014
  2. ^ a b "Veracruz moist forests". Terrestrial Ecoregions. World Wildlife Fund. Retrieved 2010-08-21.

External links[edit]