For white-throated toucans (Ramphastos tucanus), beaks aren’t just for show. These oversize, banana-shaped appendages are famously vibrant and useful for attracting mates, but they also enable the birds to pluck fruit from hard-to-reach branches and help regulate their body temperature in tropical climates.
Toucans are just one of the countless bird, mammal, and insect species found in Colombia’s astonishingly diverse bioregions, which range from snowcapped mountain peaks and mangrove-lined coasts to sweeping savannas and dense rain forests. Like a toucan’s bill, these ecosystems perform essential functions, storing large amounts of carbon and providing clean air and water, food, shelter, and livelihoods for millions of Colombians, including more than 90 Indigenous communities.
To safeguard those natural resources and habitats, WWF and partners recently launched Herencia Colombia, an initiative that promises to conserve 79 million acres of the country’s vital landscapes and seascapes in perpetuity. The project, developed in coalition with the Colombian government, also achieves Colombia’s commitment to protect 30% of its ocean by 2030—and, together with similar initiatives in Brazil and Peru, secures permanent protections for around 12% of the entire Amazon rain forest, benefiting nature and people alike.