Zamorano students and teachers planted 1,500 pine trees in the micro-basin Las Golondrinas, Honduras. Since its beginnings in 1942, the university has cared about respecting nature and carrying out actions that benefit the environment. On campus, there are tree species that make up a genetic reservoir with specimens from Latin America, the Caribbean, and other continents
Central America has 9.4 million acres of native pine trees. According to the Honduran Institute of Forest Conservation (ICF for its initials in Spanish), Honduras has nearly 4,700,000 acres of pine tree forests, but more than 1.2 million acres are affected by the southern pine beetle plague. Damage to these forests has caused enormous economic losses and negative environmental impacts.
The Uyuca Mountain, located in the Department of Francisco Morazan, Honduras, has fallen victim to thousands of these small insects that can reach a length of 3 to 4 millimeters. These beetles build tunnels between the bark and wood of the tree and need microorganisms like the blue stain fungus (Ceratocystis minor) to help them digest food. These tunnels block the transfer of nutrients and water in the tree.
Zamorano, responsible by governmental decree of caring for the Uyuca Biological Reserve and committed to the environment, joined the Honduran government’s efforts to counter the beetle by controlling the plague’s advance and restoring the affected areas through the implementation of knowledge and actions. Around 280 participants —Zamorano students, teachers, and staff; people from the Tatumbla municipality; and soldiers from the Honduran Armed Forces— joined efforts during the reforestation day named Honduras Siembra Vida (in English: Honduras Plants Life). The activity, led by the Forest Unit from the Environment and Development Department, took place on October 1st.