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Bolivian and Argentine high Andes
Country/Territory Argentina,Bolivia,Peru
Area 200,000 
Altitude 1,100 - 4,600m  
Priority critical 
Habitat loss major 
Knowledge incomplete 

General characteristics 

The area forming this EBA is the high Andes of south-east Peru through to northern Argentina, together with the region's arid intermontane valleys which lie mainly in Bolivia. North to south, the EBA runs from Aricoma in the Cordillera de Carabay in Puno department of extreme south-east Peru, through Bolivia along the eastern side of the Andes east of Lake Titicaca, and along the Cordilleras Real and Cochabamba of the main Cordillera Oriental, then south along the Andes in northern Argentina through Jujuy, Tucum

Restricted-range species 

Most of the restricted-range bird species are found in forested and scrub habitats within the puna and pre-puna zones, many of them occurring in Polylepis-dominated forest. A group of four restricted-range species (Ara rubrogenys, Upucerthia harterti, Lophospingus griseocristatus and Oreopsar bolivianus) is associated with the intermontane valleys: they occur mainly below 2,000 m, but-because their distributions vary and because other species from the higher Andes also range into these lower valleys, especially into the Polylepis forest-they are not considered to define a separate EBA; further information on the habitats and distributions of these species could, however, change this assessment in due course.

Recent surveys have recorded new locations and extended the known distributions of several restricted-range species such as Asthenes heterura, A. maculicauda, Idiopsar brachyurus and Saltator rufiventris in Tarija department of Bolivia (Fjelds

Species IUCN Category
Moreno's Ground-dove (Metriopelia morenoi)  LC 
Red-fronted Macaw (Ara rubrogenys)  EN 
Wedge-tailed Hillstar (Oreotrochilus adela)  NT 
Olivaceous Thornbill (Chalcostigma olivaceum)  LC 
Ash-breasted Tit-tyrant (Anairetes alpinus)  EN 
Royal Cinclodes (Cinclodes aricomae)  CR 
Bolivian Earthcreeper (Tarphonomus harterti)  LC 
Maquis Canastero (Asthenes heterura)  NT 
Berlepsch's Canastero (Asthenes berlepschi)  NT 
Steinbach's Canastero (Pseudasthenes steinbachi)  LC 
Line-fronted Canastero (Asthenes urubambensis)  NT 
Scribble-tailed Canastero (Asthenes maculicauda)  LC 
Bolivian Blackbird (Oreopsar bolivianus)  LC 
Grey-crested Finch (Lophospingus griseocristatus)  LC 
Short-tailed Finch (Idiopsar brachyurus)  LC 
Bolivian Warbling-finch (Poospiza boliviana)  LC 
Citron-headed Yellow-finch (Sicalis luteocephala)  LC 
Cochabamba Mountain-finch (Compsospiza garleppi)  EN 
Tucuman Mountain-finch (Compsospiza baeri)  VU 
Grey-bellied Flowerpiercer (Diglossa carbonaria)  LC 
Rufous-bellied Saltator (Saltator rufiventris)  NT 

Important Bird Areas (IBAs)

IBA Code Site Name Country
  Cordillera Huayhuash  Peru 
  UNIDA A CARPISH - Quilluacocha y Bosque de Unchog  Peru 
  Vilcanota  Peru 
AR001  Queñoales de Santa Catalina  Argentina 
AR002  Yavi y Yavi Chico  Argentina 
AR008  Reserva Provincial de Uso Múltiple Laguna Leandro  Argentina 
AR009  Caspala y Santa Ana  Argentina 
AR010  Valle Colorado y Valle Grande  Argentina 
AR013  San Lucas  Argentina 
AR025  Cerro Negro de San Antonio  Argentina 
AR029  Sierra de Santa Victoria  Argentina 
AR030  Santa Victoria, Cañani y Cayotal  Argentina 
AR036  Sierra de Zenta  Argentina 
AR047  Quebrada del Toro  Argentina 
AR050  Cuesta del Obispo  Argentina 
AR051  Parque Nacional Los Cardones  Argentina 
AR052  Luracatao y Valles Calchaquíes  Argentina 
AR054  Quebrada de las Conchas  Argentina 
AR082  Sierra de Ambato  Argentina 
AR085  Parque Provincial Cumbres Calchaquíes  Argentina 
AR086  Ruinas de Quilmes  Argentina 
AR088  El Infiernillo  Argentina 
AR089  Reserva Natural de La Angostura  Argentina 
AR092  Parque Provincial La Florida  Argentina 
AR152  Llanos de Jagüé  Argentina 
AR153  Parque Nacional Talampaya  Argentina 
AR180  Reserva de la Biosfera Parque Nacional San Guillermo  Argentina 
AR181  Parque Nacional El Leoncito  Argentina 
AR185  Reserva Provincial Florística y Faunística Bosques Teltecas  Argentina 
AR187  Reserva Provincial Laguna de Llancanelo  Argentina 
BO004  Bosque de Polylepis de Madidi  Bolivia 
BO007  Cuenca Cotacajes  Bolivia 
BO008  Cuencas de Ríos Caine y Mizque  Bolivia 
BO009  Bosque de Polylepis de Sanja Pampa  Bolivia 
BO010  Bosque de Polylepis de Mina Elba  Bolivia 
BO011  Bosque de Polylepis de Taquesi  Bolivia 
BO015  Yungas Superiores de Apolobamba  Bolivia 
BO023  Southern slopes of Tunari National Park (Vertiente Sur del Parque Nacional Tunari IBA)  Bolivia 
BO026  Azurduy  Bolivia 
BO028  Cerro Q'ueñwa Sandora  Bolivia 
BO039  Quebrada Mojón  Bolivia 
BO042  Reserva Nacional de Flora y Fauna Tariquía  Bolivia 
BO043  Tacacoma-Quiabaya y Valle de Sorata  Bolivia 
PE068  Parque Nacional Huascarán  Peru 
PE074  Milpo  Peru 
PE085  Runtacocha-Morococha  Peru 
PE088  Santuario Histórico Machu Picchu  Peru 
PE090  Lagos Yanacocha  Peru 
PE096  Valcón  Peru 

Threats and conservation 

The puna zone of Peru, Bolivia, Argentina, and Chile has been extensively altered for agriculture and is degraded in many areas through the grazing of domestic livestock, burning and the collection of firewood (Dinerstein et al. 1995). Settlement and agricultural conversion have already had dramatic effects on the EBA, and further expansion seriously threatens remaining fragments of habitat. The destruction of Polylepis forest through clearance for cultivation, firewood-collection and burning for pasture is a particularly serious threat to many of the restricted-range birds. Nine of them are considered threatened, and in the case of four (Cinclodes aricomae, Anairetes alpinus, Poospiza garleppi and Saltator rufiventris) this is because of destruction of their Polylepis forest habitat. A. berlepschi is threatened because of its tiny range (near Nevado Illampu). Ara rubrogenys, which is found in the arid foothills, has declined in its tiny range in Bolivia owing to capture for the cage-bird trade, persecution as a pest in peanut and maize fields, and loss of trees. Poospiza baeri is threatened because the grassland which surrounds its tiny range is susceptible to fire, which could in turn reach the species' specialized habitat in the ravines. Asthenes steinbachi appears to have been largely extirpated by habitat loss, remaining common only in a few scattered localities mainly in the southern part of its range, especially in Mendoza. Other more-widespread threatened species (all classified as Vulnerable) are found within the EBA, including Andean Flamingo Phoenicopterus andinus, Puna Flamingo P. jamesi, Horned Coot Fulica cornuta and White-tailed Shrike-tyrant Agriornis andicola.

Wege and Long (1995) list nine Key Areas in Bolivia for the threatened species found in this EBA, but only two of these have any protection: a small population of Ara rubrogenys occurred (at least formerly) on the edge of Ambor

Recommended citation  BirdLife International (2016) Endemic Bird Area factsheet: Bolivian and Argentine high Andes. Downloaded from on 26/10/2016

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