To build the 120 meter high dam on the Ivirizu River,
In the Carrasco National Park, 250 hectares of the 622,600 that the protected area has must be deforested; the dam will occupy 100 hectares.
Since the entry of machinery for the execution of the hydroelectric megaproject, located 118 kilometers from the city of Cochabamba, 6,000 reptiles and amphibians have been “relocated”, and more than 3,000 specimens of flora.
Throughout the Carrasco Park there are more than 800 species of vertebrates, of which 125 are large mammals. Among the most representative are the jucumari bear, the Andean deer, the jaguar, the Andean cat and the tapir.
Before each clearing, a brigade of biologists enters the area with whistles for the animals to leave the place. Afterwards, an assessment is made to rescue some species. “There is a chase away. It is difficult for us to find a larger fauna. These animals, when they feel movement and anthropic activity (of humans), escape ”say the specialists.
In some cases, the animals are chased away with shotgun shots, confessed some workers.
Larger mammals can naturally relocate to other locations without much inconvenience.
Only 6 thousand reptiles and amphibians that were in the 120 hectares intervened for the construction of the hydroelectric plant were relocated because the scientists involved argue that they are the only ones who cannot move easily.
But what about the large numbers of mice and other very small mammals that have no chance of escape?
The bird records reach approximately 850 species, almost 30 percent of all those registered in the country. The park is considered one of the priority protected areas for bird conservation in Bolivia, since it encompasses endemic areas.
Birds can fly and escape intervention, but they leave their young and eggs behind. Although the company has a rescue plan in the event that nesting sites are found, at the moment no eggs were rescued from the 120 deforested hectares.
Biologists argue that wildlife is generally mobile. “The animals are going to go to other places. Normally it works, but it can cause a kind of competition between species, but after a while it stabilizes "