Pululahua Geobotanical Reserve
Pululahua Geobotanical Reserve is in the province of Pichincha of Ecuador.
Pululahua is a Quichua word that means “cloud of water” or fog. It is a collapsed volcano with great biodiversity and unique geological formations. It is due to this uniqueness that it was declared a Geobotanical Reserve.
The Pululahua Geobotanical Reserve was first created as a National Park on the 28th of January on 1966 via decree law No. 194. This was the first National Park created in Ecuador and in South America to protect this unique place.
On 17th of February of 1978, this National Park was declared a Geobotanical Reserve via decree law No. 2559. This declaration was due to its geological uniqueness, and great diversity with more than 2000 species of flora, great diversity of birds, mammals, and insects of exotic appearance.
It is a caldera formed from the collapsed volcano after it emptied it´s magma chamber during the eruptions dating back to 500 B.C. or 2500 years ago. This type of formation is typical of very strong eruptions that weaken the internal structure of a volcano. The caldera has three lava domes, Pondoña, El Chivo, and Pan de Azucar, which formed in the years following the eruption, and after the volcano collapsed. The highest elevation of this volcano is the Sincholagua hill on the north eastern side of the caldera at an elevation of 3356 meters.
Flora and fauna
The Andes have more than 2900 endemic species; many of these are found in Pululahua and for this reason it is now a Geobotanical Reserve. The dense tree vegetation has a lot of mosses, ferns, lichens, bromeliads and orchids.
Here you will find a good collection of orchid pictures taken in the Pululahua: Pululahua Orchids
Here you will find a good collection of flower pictures taken in the Pululahua: Pululahua Flowers