One forest, three nations: the biological and cultural diversity of Belize
The Maya Forest straddles the countries of Belize, Guatemala and Mexico. Once home to the ancient Mayan civilization, annual archeological expeditions continue to make new discoveries in the area. The Maya Forest is a rich source of wildlife and home to the endangered Northern Central American Scarlet Macaw. In the Maya villages of Red Bank and San Pablo, villagers, with assistance from foreign funds and local NGOs, have created a community-tourism industry. Unfortunately, a hydroelectric project, the Macal River Chalillo Project [MRCP] involving the construction of the Chalillo Dam threatens the only known nesting areas for the Belizean population of Scarlet Macaws.