FOREST OF FRAY JORGE
Forest of Fray Jorge National Park
Its peculiar misty forest, its valuable wildlife and its varied ecosystems were the reasons why the Forest of San Jorge National Park was created in 1941. In 1977 UNESCO would used these very same reasons to grant these 9959 hectares of the Commune of Ovalle, located in the Province of Limarí, in the IV Coquimbo Region, the title of Biosphere Reserve in 1977.
This splendid natural area seeks to protect and preserve the flora and fauna, especially the dense vegetation of the so-called Misty Forest of Valdivia, of hydrophanous type, which contrasts with the arid and deserted landscapes proper of the coastal zone it is located on.
The unusual and amazing phenomenon locally known as comanchaca, which is explained by the condensation of the coastal fog, that allows the growing of the forest, configures a splendid natural scenario very much appreciated by investigators and by all those loving eco-tourism.
The Park is situated on the summits of the system of coastal hills known by the name of Altos de Talinay, with average altitudes of 600 metres. There are an interesting variety of flora within it, with species such as drimys (Drimys winteri), boldos (Puemus boldus), olivillos (Kageneckia angustifolia), ferns, creepers, mosses, cacti and uvillos, amongst other species.
This natural richness is complemented with several fauna species, with mammals such as the Andean fox (Pseudalopex culpaeus), the pampas cat, the Conepatus chinga (Molina's hog-nosed skunk, the so called quinques and small rodents. Regarding the birds we have the tinamou (Nothoprocta predicaría), the puna hawk (Buteo polyosoma), the Long-tailed Meadowlark. (Sturnella loyca), the Black-chinned Siskin. (Carduelis barbata), and the White-throated Tapaculo (Scelorchilus albicollis), amongst others.