The guardians of the Perijá Parakeet, an endemic and endangered bird: Libardo Rodríguez and Nancy Rivera

In the courtyard of Libardo Rodríguez’s house, which is nothing less than the upper part of the Serranía del Perijá, stand tall, mature trees. Every morning, without fail, multiple birds arrive, of course, because his small house is located in one of the areas with the greatest biodiversity of birds in the world. Woodpeckers, hawks, toucans, hummingbirds and as a divine gift: Perijá parrots, phyrrura picta, an endemic parrot of Perijá that is in danger of extinction. The expansion of the agricultural frontier, the conflict and the lack of opportunities for the inhabitants of the Serranía have led to the loss of habitat for this parrot. Libardo says that every morning the parrots arrive. Seeing them is really a gift and a wake-up call. As if their feathers held a secret: the fragility of life.

Libardo recently arrived to live there, it is a land that belongs to his brother, who does not live in the country. As if he had been called by the parrots, he arrived with his wife and little daughter with the idea of regenerating this territory. He sees enormous potential in community ecotourism and believes he can find a decent livelihood there. He is knowledgeable about local biodiversity, adventurous, friendly and young; Libardo’s presence represents hope for these territories. Libardo wants to be a guide, get a good guiding team and work together with his cousin, Nancy Rivera, who also lives in the Argentina Sur trail.

Nancy, like Libardo, recently arrived to live in the Serranía and since her arrival she has been very interested in the tourism project. She lives on a coffee farm, where she has planted an abundant and beautiful vegetable garden for her own consumption. Nancy spends most of her time doing housework, she is a woman with a mild temperament who is usually cheerful. Since she found out about the Forest and Peace Tourist Routes she has been attending the courses, she says she loves cooking and service. His purpose is to fix up a room he has available to receive travelers. At the moment the room has walls made of plastic construction, his idea is to adapt it, because he knows that many people will want to go there to meet the Perijá parrot.

Libardo and Nancy are committed to conservation and it is fortunate that people like them inhabit these territories.

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