Decision : CONF 208 X.A
Alejandro de Humboldt National Park (Cuba)
Property: Alejandro de Humboldt National Park
Id. N°: 839 Rev
State Party: Cuba
Criteria: N (ii) (iv)
The Committee inscribed Alejandro de Humboldt National Park on the World Heritage List under natural criteria (ii) and (iv):
Criterion (ii): The size, altitudinal diversity, complex lithologies, and landform diversity of Alejandro de Humboldt National Park have resulted in a range of ecosystems and species unmatched in the Insular Caribbean. It was a Miocene-Pleistocene refuge site, particularly in the glacial eras, for the Caribbean biota. The fresh water rivers that flow off the peaks of the park are some of the largest in the insular Caribbean and because of this have high freshwater biological diversity. Because of the serpentine, peridotite, karst and pseudokarst geology of the region, the park is an excellent example of ongoing processes in the evolution of species and communities on underlying rocks that pose special challenges to plant survival.
Criterion (iv): Alejandro de Humboldt National Park contains the most important and significant natural habitats for in-situ conservation of terrestrial biological diversity in the entire insular Caribbean. It contains 16 of 28 plant formations defined for Cuba, the largest island in the Caribbean, which is a unique biogeographic province. It is one of the most important sites for conservation of endemic flora in the entire Western Hemisphere - nearly 70% of the 1,302 spermatophytes already described, of an estimated total of 1,800-2,000, are endemic to the park. The park is one of the most biologically diverse terrestrial tropical ecosystems in an island setting anywhere on earth. Endemism rates for vertebrates and invertebrates found in the park are also very high. Many of these are threatened because of their small range. Because of their uniqueness and the fact that they represent unique evolutionary processes, they are of outstanding universal value from the point of view of science and conservation.
The Committee requested that the management plan be finalized within a timeframe of 12 months and be sent to the World Heritage Centre in three copies.