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PLACES TO SEE > RESERVES > Bladen Nature Reserve


Bladen River Nature Reserve, covering 97000-acres of wilderness, is probably Belize's most pristine protected rainforest. The reserve gets its name from the Bladen Branch of the Monkey River, which runs northeasterly through the area.

Bladen Entrance Sign

This rugged wilderness encompasses a portion of the southeastern slope of the Maya Mountains and the fringing limestone karst foothills at lower elevations. The slopes are covered with old-growth broadleaf forests and swiftly-flowing streams. Largely unexplored, the Bladen River valley contains massive limestone hills, rock outcrops, sinkholes, caves,and waterfalls. A Mayan site was recently discovered deep in the Quebrada de Oro valley. Low rock mounds were identified along with one grouping that appears to represent tombs, courts, and an avenue.

Bladen Reserve is a remote haven for wildlife. Lofty trees, towering palms, massive lianas, giant herbs, flowering plants, and curious fruits attract much wildlife. Bladen FogAt least 194 bird species have been identified. Large birds such as crested guans and great curassows are common. Over 300 animal species thrive here-from small animals,including squirrel, agouti, opossum, peccary, to large herbivores, like white tailed deer and tapir, to the carnivorous Mountain lion and jaguar at the top of the food chain.

Protected by the Government of Belize in 1990, this reserve receives the highest level of preservation. The nature reserve is only open to scientists and other researchers. At some point in the future limited tourism may be permitted. Information concerning permits and access can be found at the Belize Audubon Society or the Government Forestry Department.

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