Brazil has declared three exceptional and diverse wetland areas as Wetlands of International Importance.
The Environmental Protection Area of Cananéia-Iguape-Peruíbe (Ramsar Site no. 2310), situated in São Paulo and Paraná States, is a representative wetland area of the Atlantic Forest. It is part of the “Atlantic Forest South-East Reserves” World Heritage site and UNESCO Biosphere Reserve. The Site has mangroves, estuaries, rivers, lagoon channels, coastal plains, waterfalls and marine and coastal islands. It also features sandbank forests, dunes and the most extensive and conserved stretch of Atlantic Forest in the country.
This mosaic of wetland landscapes of great natural diversity and notable scenic beauty hosts threatened and endemic species such as the critically endangered black-faced lion tamarin Leontopithecus caissara, the endangered Atlantic petrel Pterodroma incerta and the channel-billed toucan Ramphastos vitellinus.
Guaratuba (Site no. 2317), located on the southernmost coast of the state of Paraná, is considered the most important area for the Paraná antwren Stymphalornis acutirostris, of which it hosts about 42% of the global population. It features well preserved mangroves, periodically flooded forests, marshes and over 3,000 hectares of the last remains of caixeta (Tabebuia cassinoides) forests.
Ilha Grande National Park (Site no. 2316) is located on the Paraná River, on the border of the states of Paraná and Mato Grosso do Sul, near the border with Paraguay. It is composed of approximately 180 islands, as well as river banks, natural ponds and freshwater marshes. The National Park protects two types of environment that are now rare and degraded in the Brazilian Mid-South: riparian forests and floodplains.
Besides the scenic beauty, these areas are important breeding and feeding places for several species of fish. It also hosts various endangered species, including the marsh deer Blastocerus dichotomus, symbol of the National Park, the brown howler monkey Alouatta fusca and the Southeastern four-eyed opossum Philander frenata, which is endemic to the Atlantic Forest.