Several National Park Service sites have established "sister park" relationships with national parks in other countries.
Reserva Forestal Nacional y Refugio de Fauna Silvestre Ajos Bavispe
Coronado National Memorial has two sister parks in Mexico. Beginning in October of 1996, Ajos-Bavispe National Forest Reserve and Wildlife Refuge and Coronado National Memorial initiated a partnership effort to promote the sharing of information and expertise along the México-United States border. The goal of this partnership is to strengthen the management of ecosystems across the Arizona-Sonora border for the common goal of enhancing conservation of similar natural and cultural resources.
The Ajos-Bavispe National Forest Reserve and Wildlife Refuge, is vital for both flora and fauna and for human activities. The reserve is located in a region known as the Sky Island Archipelago (Islas del Cielo) and is divided into 5 sections which occupy part of 14 municipalities. The mountains serve as sources for the Sonora, Santa Rosa and Bavispe rivers. These important rivers represent more than a third of the water for state of Sonora.
It is also characterized by very high and inaccessible areas, allowing you to have varied fauna, since it is the refuge and habitat for species such as the black bear, jaguar, puma, ocelot, eagle, bald eagle, wild turkey , prairie dog, collared peccary, beaver, deer, mule deer, bats, coyotes and gray foxes, to name a few.
Parque Nacional El Chico
In 2003, El Chico National Park, located in the state of Hidalgo, became our newest sister park. Noteworthy are the towering cliffs known as Las Ventanas and Peña del Cuervo representing splendid natural viewpoints, and ideal places to practice mountaineering. Among the animals that inhabit the forest are: gray fox, ringtail, opossums, armadillos, falcons, hawks, woodpeckers, salamanders, chameleons and mountain rattlesnakes.
The park also lends itself to the research of flora and fauna. The park encompasses a number of diverse ecosystems ideal for all kinds of studies related to nature history.
The Sister Park Relationship
The following broad goals describe our vision for these sister park relationships:
·To meet annually at one of the parks on a rotating basis to continue the orientation of new employees and exchange of experiences between personnel in such topics as: the development of conservation strategies, resource management, research, protection, and education. These meetings may include other cooperators and partners as appropriate. More frequent meetings will occur with specific staff members as needed to complete specific projects.
·To provide mutual assistance with planning efforts related to management, development, and operations.
·To expand scientific knowledge of all three areas through cooperative research projects.
·To cross-train staffs in a variety of disciplines, including such topics as: resource protection and investigation skills and operations to promote safety and resource preservation, special status species, fire management, and environmental education. Explore the loan of employees on details to other areas where appropriate for professional development and to provide assistance.
·To develop environmental education and training programs for all areas and local communities wherever possible to promote public awareness, understanding, and participation in conservation and the sustainable use of border resources.
·To be alert for joint opportunities and creative in finding ways to accomplish these. Don’t hesitate to bring in other cooperators. Support and encourage each other.