Patagonia is vast, remote, and rugged. All told, its terrestrial wilderness spans over a million square miles, roughly seven times the state of New York. Its waters cover 1.8 million square miles—about the size of Alaska. Together, these are home to some of the largest coastal colonies of marine mammals and birds anywhere.
Both offshore and inland, Patagonia faces serious threats, including fishing and oil exploration off the coast and extractive industry and unsustainable agriculture and ranching on land.
Preserve Patagonia's wild treasures by partnering with local governments and communities to promote sustainable land use, wildlife-friendly management practices, and the creation of protected areas.
How Will We Get There?
Our strategies include:
Help create large, integrated networks of marine, coastal, and terrestrial protected areas.
Design, establish, and promote sustainable and wildlife-friendly ranching practices that reduce human/animal conflicts and help conserve or restore core habitat.
Support essential research to direct conservation strategies for key species, including guanacos, condors, flamingos, and felids on land; sea elephants and seabirds along the coast; and cetaceans and sharks offshore.
Establish informal and formal education initiatives to build the capacity of the current and next generation of conservation stakeholders in the region.
WCS is well established in Patagonia. Working in both Chile and Argentina, we have solid partnerships with public and private stakeholders, and we are the go-to organization for sound, robust, scientific approaches to conservation. Our work includes the management, with our partners, of Chile's Karukinka Natural Park, a Rhode Island–sized reserve that's home to significant marine and terrestrial wildlife. Since 2001, we have worked in the Grand Jason/isla Salvaje del Este and Steeple Jason Islands/isla Salvaje del Oeste*, home to globally important populations of marine birds.
*A dispute exists between the Governments of Argentina and the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland concerning sovereignty over the Falkland Islands/Islas Malvinas, South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands/Islas Georgias del Sur e Islas Sandwich del Sur and the surrounding maritime areas.