Environmental Education in Peten
CebioThe ARCAS Biodiversity Education Center (CEBIO) is an extension of the Rescue Center and is located on the shores of Lake Petén Itza.
It includes an exhibition hall, dock, interpretive trails, and outdoor animal enclosures surrounded by forest, which teach visitors about the ecology of Peten, the destructiveness of the illegal wildlife trade, as well as the need to conserve the resources that make the Mayan Biosphere Reserve such a special place.
The interactive exhibits seek to educate the Guatemalan public and foreign visitors, about its incredible biodiversity and the threats to which it is exposed. It also allows them to learn about the wildlife rescue and rehabilitation work carried out at the Rescue Center without exposing the rehabilitation animals to human presence.
Visitors will be able to appreciate the different wild animals, which are the product of illegal traffic and that unfortunately will not be able to return to their natural habitat due to injuries, trauma, inappropriate behavior and/or domestication caused by man. They are part of the awareness program that is offered to the visiting public.
We believe that conservation and environmental education go hand in hand and here at the Biodiversity Education Center, the hope of wildlife is combined with learning.
Upon entering, visitors will be able to pass through our exhibition hall. Here permanent exhibits highlight the biological wealth that Guatemala has as a megadiverse country, the dangers and threats to wildlife, and the organizations that work hand in hand for their protection. Throughout this area the work carried out by the ARCAS Rescue Center, working for the conservation of these species, is illustrated.
It has interactive touch screens in which the visitor can navigate themselves and learn more about nature and the illegal wildlife trade. Utilizing the increased technology available, the Biodiversity Education Center has created a unique space where the educational visit reaches another level. A virtual reality room enables the visitor to experience first-hand the threats that wildlife face as well as being able to see releases from a real-life perspective.
After passing through this building, visitors will be able to start their journey around the center on forest enclosed paths. Here various interactive stations will guide them to the different enclosures which house animals that are unfortunately unable to be released.
AnimalsDuring the visit to the Biodiversity Education Center, they will be able to observe the five cat species that inhabit Guatemala, as well as parrots, macaws, chachalacas, birds of prey, toucans, spider monkeys and more. Unfortunately, the animals housed here cannot be released, as many of them, after going through the trauma of separation from their parents, were turned into pets before arriving at ARCAS.
These animals now have physical limitations and behavioral problems as a direct consequence of illegal trafficking and would not be able to survive in the wild. Here they are cared for and provide a vital purpose, educating the public and raising awareness about the harsh reality of having a wild animal as a pet.
OPENING HOURS: 8:00 to 16:30 hours. Open from Monday to Sunday
The Biodiversity Education Center (CEBIO) is located across the lake Peten Itza from Flores, it is a 10min – 15min boat ride. Many taxi boats are available around Flores, or from the nearby village of San Miguel. Entry is only by boat, there is no road access.