Island Conservation science chile alejandro selkirk landscape

Welcome to Alejandro Selkirk Island, Chile

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Alejandro Selkirk Island, more commonly known as Isla Masafuera by the lobster fishermen and their families who inhabit the island for eight months of the year, is the youngest and most remote island of the Juan Fernández Archipelago, Chile.

island conservation alejandro selkirk

Rada La Colonia, the only village on Alejandro Selkirk Island, inhabited by lobster fishermen eight months a year. Credit: Maddy Pott/Island Conservation

This island is the tallest in the archipelago and sometimes sees snow in the coldest months at the summit, which is home to a number of rare and endangered plant and bird species, such as the Juan Fernández Orchid (Gavilea insularis) and the Critically Endangered Masafuera Rayadito (Aphrastura masafuerae). The summit of the island hosts a lush fern forest where these species manage to eke out a living and where they still manage to find refuge from invasive plants and animals which threaten their very existence.

Island Conservation science chile alejandro selkirk bird rayaditoCritically Endangered Masafuera Rayadito on Alejandro Selkirk Island. Photo by Island Conservation.

La isla Alejandro Selkirk, comúnmente llamada Masafuera por los pescadores de langosta y sus familias que habitan esta isla durante 8 meses en el año, es la más joven y remota del Archipiélago Juan Fernández, Chile. Es la isla más alta del archipiélago y durante los meses más fríos del año a veces se ve nieve en la cumbre, que es hogar de especies únicas de plantas y animales, como la orquídea de Juan Fernández (Gavilea insularis) y el Rayadito de Masafuera (Aphrastura masafuerae) en Peligro Crítico. La parte más alta de la isla alberga un exuberante bosque de helechos donde estas especies se las arreglan para encontrar refugio ante plantas y animales invasores que amenazan su existencia.

About Diego Tabilo

Diego studied engineering in natural renewable resources at the University of Chile. He is currently finishing his thesis about the different pathways in private-sector activities for exotic-species introduction in the Juan Fernández archipelago and the willingness of these enterprises to collaborate in biosecurity.

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