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Ecuador Information

A country less than twice the size of England, few can match Ecuador’s diverse range of habitats and rich wildlife. According to the World Resource Institute, Ecuador is one of the few countries on earth categorized as "megadiverse" owing to its wide variety of ecosystems and species.

Ecuador - The Facts
Population: 13.6 million
Official Language: Spanish
Currency: US Dollar
Capital City: Quito
Largest City: Guayaquil
Total Area: 256,370 km2 / 98,985 sq mi
Calling Code: + 593
Current time in Ecuador...

Ecuador’s incredible biodiversity is the result of a combination of factors, its tropical location on the equator, the high Andes mountain range, two major ocean currents along its coast and finally it is home to the remote Pacific Islands of Galapagos a place of huge importance for evolutionary biology.

To give you but a few statistics, it contains over 15% of the world's bird species and hosts 10% of all known plants. Ecuador is also home to one of the strongest indigenous cultures in South America and some of the Andes oldest and most colourful markets.

The Tropics – the regions around the equator are known as the place on earth with the highest biodiversity, probably due to the fact that in times of Ice Ages these areas served as safe havens for all living organisms. Ecuador is home to part of the Amazon basin, as well as the coastal basin and the high Andes which reach up to 6000 meters. All these serve as ideal conditions for different habitats due to its large range of altitudes. The Andes also serves as a geographical barrier between the coastal tropics and subtropics to the west and the Amazon and subtropics to the east. Add to this a large number of isolated areas, which lends itself to speciation and thus an increase of distinctive species of plants and animals over time, with a high rate of endemic species.

Some species estimates for Ecuador…..
• 25,000 species of plants (compared to 17,000 species in the whole of North America)
• 1600 species of birds (more than double the species found across the whole of Europe)
• 369 known species of mammals (the most mammals per square meter of anywhere in the world)
• Around 400 amphibian species (the most species of frogs in the world)
• 350 species of reptiles (with over 200 species of snakes alone)
• Estimated around 800 species of fish in the Amazon waters and 450 different fish
in the Pacific Ocean surrounding Ecuador

Despite these very impressive numbers, much of the wildlife in Ecuador is under threat as a result of human intervention – mostly through deforestation. Much is seriously endangered. Trying to counter this loss and protect the country’s biodiversity for future generations are some excellent foundations and projects such as the Jocotoco Foundation, sustainable community projects like that of the Anangu Community with the Napo Wildlife Centre along with UK Charities like Rainforest Concern and the World Land Trust, (links of some of these are found in our links page).

Telephone Telephone01964 552292 for more information or emailemail us today.

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