Central Coast, Peru

The Biodiversity Monitoring and Assessment Program (BMAP) provides a research and monitoring framework to understand the dynamics of the coastal marine biological communities associated to the Peru Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) marine infrastructure. The BMAP is a strategic conservation and development alliance between the Smithsonian and PERU LNG to study the newly created artificial reef and biodiversity hot spot and to provide best management practices. This artificial reef was created in 2010 and includes a ~400-piles main pier and two breakwaters (800 and 200 meters) established over an area of sediment flats. This is the only LNG terminal in South America and of great economic importance to Peru.

The BMAP integrates long-term biological and ecological information with environmental and climate data to understand the status and trends of marine biodiversity communities, including seabirds, and their adaptive response to human activities and environmental variations including climate. Associated to the area are species of commercial importance and conservation concern. Smithsonian and Peruvian researchers implement standardized research protocols and experiments around the artificial reef and adjacent natural habitats. The area is located at the central coast of Peru, 167 km south of Lima, Peru. The location is of high research importance because is part of the Humboldt Current Large Marine Ecosystem, one of the most productive marine ecosystems on earth.

Since 2011, BMAP researchers have welcomed and trained Peruvian undergraduate and graduate students on marine research and environmental monitoring and have established a network of collaborations with national and international scientists.

  • Two people sampling benthos on a beach in Peru
  • Peru Liquefied Natural Gas Terminal at Dusk
  • Pair of Humboldt Penguins climbing out of the water
  • Lots of birds sitting on a breakwater in Peru
  • Inca Tern (scientific name: larosterna inca)
  • Fish feeding on the breakwater in Peru
  • Peru Liquefied Natural Gas terminal in daylight
  • Humboldt penguin nesting with two eggs
  • Chalapo clinid (Labrisomus philippii)