Conservation Projects

Here you will find more detail on our ongoing scientific research and conservation projects that you and your family can get involved in while visiting the UMA Los del Carrizal conservation area within the Rancho El Carrizal.

Native Fauna

Native Wildlife (Fauna) Survey with UAQ

The UMA Los del Carrizal has partnered with Dr. Carlos López at the Universidad Autónoma de Querétaro (UAQ) to perform a comprehensive survey of the native wildlife on the 1800 hectare ranch in the El Zamorano mountain range. With particular focus on the Mexican white-tailed deer, puma and armadillo populations, this ongoing survey is currently employing the use of 16 camera traps associated with capture-recapture systems and footprint counting, fecal group counts along a measured transect using the Eberhardt-Van Etten (1956) model, and genetic and molecular analyzes of fecal samples to identify individuals and their sex. Additional camera trap photos will be coming soon following scheduled fieldwork. Ask us how you can contribute to these critical research efforts.

Native Flora

Native Flora (Plant) Survey with SEMARNAT

As part of a broader effort to determine species of wild flora with a significant risk category in accordance with NOM-059-SEMARNAT-2010, the US Peace Corps volunteers are working with SEMARNAT and aspiring biologists at Arkansas State University-QRO to improve native flora conservation and sustainable use in the future. Native flora species with particular medicinal, edible, or reforestation potential are cataloged and identified for future soil conservation or other climate change adaptation potential. Ask us how you too can contribute to these critical research efforts.

Pinturas Rupestres

Indigenous Rock Painting Conservation w/ INAH

Fieldwork continues in combination with Dr Carlos Viramontes at the Instituto Nacional de Antropología e Historia de México (INAH) - Querétaro to identify and catalog the abundance of indigenous rock paintings across the UMA Los del Carrizal. With these pinturas rupestres located at some seven different rock outcrop locations across the 1800 hectare ranch, work is underway to preserve and protect these ancient treasures while providing safe access for public enjoyment and education. Initial estimates suggest that these paintings were the work of the Chichimecas people circa 1000-1500 years AD. Inquire about volunteer opportunities to help preserve these important artifacts of Mexican history.

Trail Network

Trail & sign improvements for Hikers and Horses w/ Peace Corps and ASU-QRO

In a combined effort involving US Peace Corps and Arkansas State University-QRO volunteer personnel, working alongside local El Carrizal community members, a grand effort is underway to clear and mark over 30 kilometers of hiking and horseback riding trails across the 1800 hectare mountainous wildlife conservation area. Although this project initially commenced as an effort to promote ecotourism and improve navigational access to the incredible vistas and historical rock painting sites that the UMA Los del Carrizal has to offer, it will also serve to reduce erosion and protect threatened native plant species. All trails are also being actively logged via GPS with data and photos uploaded with detailed narrative to the hiking/mountain biking web application Wikiloc.  Inquire about opportunities to assist us in protecting our endangered semi-desert flora and threatened pine and oak forests.