El Yunque National Forest Atlas

Primary Contact

Maya Quiñones, Cartographic Technician

Phone: 787-764-7156


Río Piedras, Puerto Rico, June 5, 2018 - The USDA Forest Service International Institute of Tropical Forestry today presented El Yunque National Forest Atlas, which contains maps and information of this important natural resource of Puerto Rico, reported Dr. Ariel Lugo director of the Institute.

The publication, is a collaboration of the Institute with El Yunque National Forest [Opens in New Window]. It is the first atlas published on this forest. El Yunque is the only tropical forest in the U.S. National Forest System. "The Institute is pleased to present this Atlas based on the science produced during decades of research in El Yunque with the aim of making it available to school communities, other scientists and the general public," said Dr. Lugo.

"Through the collaborative efforts of scientists, natural resource managers and other specialists we are very proud of this Atlas. It is a useful tool to help visually describe the natural and social economic resources of El Yunque National Forest," said Sharon Wallace, Forest Supervisor. "It was produced as part of the Forest Plan revision effort, which we will be finalizing this year. We plan to use this document to better engage the community as we work together to manage the Forest into the future," she added.

I am very pleased and proud of the scientific and aesthetic quality of the Atlas, which is an example of how scientific data can be translated into an attractive and useful product for multiple purposes. The Atlas can serve as a tropical forest management guide, an educational instrument inside and outside the island and for cultural enjoyment," said scientist and Institute project leader, Dr. Grizelle González.

This atlas visually summarizes the natural attributes of El Yunque. It is divided into six chapters about terrestrial resources, water, plants and animals, people, research and management, and recreation. It includes social and economic data of the municipalities that surround the forest, management and research activities and recreation resources that visitors can enjoy. It is a bilingual publication (in Spanish and English). All maps, figures, and photographs are original and previously unpublished.

Image CaptionEl Yunque National Forest Atlas

The authors are specialists with the Institute and El Yunque National Forest. These are: Maya Quiñones geographer and cartographer; environmental scientist, geographer and urbanist Isabel K. Parés Ramos; Institute ecologist, researcher and director of the USDA Caribbean Climate Hub, Dr. William A. Gould; Institute project leader and scientist, Dr. Grizelle González; Institute social scientist and professor at North Carolina State University, Dr. Kathleen McGinley; and biologist and leader of the El Yunque National Forest Management and Ecosystem Plan Team, Pedro Ríos.

"The Atlas is an X-ray of El Yunque National Forest, through which we share the studies conducted on our natural heritage in an accessible and attractive way for all audiences," said lead co-authors, Maya Quiñones and Isabel K. Parés Ramos.

The authors compiled the most up-to-date studies in collaboration with the El Yunque National Forest Management Plan Interdisciplinary Team, a group of professional scientists, foresters, and managers who were convened to work on the management plan revision process and the 2014 Forest Plan Assessment Report.

The atlas was published with support from USDA Forest Service Research and Development, El Yunque National Forest, State and Private Forestry, Region 8 Biological and Physical Resources Program, the Caribbean Landscape Conservation Cooperative, and the USDA Caribbean Climate Hub. All research at the International Institute of Tropical Forestry is done in collaboration with the University of Puerto Rico.

View/Download the Digital Version of the Atlas

Request a Hard Copy

To obtain a hard copy of the El Yunque Atlas flip book (English and Spanish) please Email the Institute. The printed edition consists of 4000 copies.

Visit Us

Hard copies are available at no cost by visiting our Forest Service library, located in the Botanical Gardens in Rio Piedras, San Juan. Our library’s office hours are: Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, 11:00 am to 4:00 pm.Tuesday and Thursday, 8:00 am to 1:00 pm.

Institute Map with library location. [Opens in New Window]

The Institute's mission is to develop and disseminate scientifically-based knowledge that contributes to the conservation of forests, wildlife, and watersheds of the American tropics in the context of environmental change.

The mission of the U.S. Forest Service, an agency of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, is to sustain the health, diversity and productivity of the nation's forests and grasslands to meet the needs of present and future generations. The agency manages 193 million acres of public land, provides assistance to state and private landowners, and maintains world-renowned forestry research and wildland fire management organizations. National forests and grasslands contribute more than $30 billion to the American economy annually and support nearly 360,000 jobs. These lands also provide 30 percent of the nation's surface drinking water to cities and rural communities; approximately 60 million Americans rely on drinking water that originated from the National Forest System.

USDA is an equal opportunity provider and employer. To file a complaint of discrimination, write to USDA, Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights, Office of the Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights, 1400 Independence Avenue, S.W., Stop 9410, Washington, DC 20250-9410, or call toll-free at (866) 632-9992 (English) or (800) 877-8339 (TDD) or (866) 377-8642 (English Federal-relay) or (800) 845-6136 (Spanish Federal-relay).

Page last modified: 06/13/2018