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Contributing to the conservation of Baja California's biodiversity

Institutions involved

Our Purpose

ogether with other organizations, we seek to generate actions for conservation, research, environmental education, and the strengthening of human communities that coexist with the bighorn sheep in the Sierra de la Asamblea, Baja California.


The Santuario Cimarrón conservation efforts are focused on a 30,000 ha polygon in the Sierra de la Asamblea, located in southern Baja California between Bahía de San Luis Gonzaga and Bahía de los Ángeles.


"The Santuario Cimarrón is a collaborative effort between several groups of people who see the project as a hope for life.”

        — Georgina Walther. Former Director of the Fundación UABC

"The Santuario Cimarrón is a project of great importance for the conservation not only of an emblematic species such as the bighorn sheep, but also of the desert and mountain ecosystems on which all the inhabitants of Baja California depend.”

    — Enrique Ruiz. Santuario Cimarrón Operations Coordinator

"It's very important to have an area like the Santuario Cimarrón dedicated solely to bighorn sheep conservation in order to recover the species' populations."

        — Raul Valdez. Professor Emeritus, New Mexico State

"Initiatives like the Santuario Cimarrón are important for the conservation of species that live in places that are at high risk of disappearing due to climate change."

        — Alina Monroy. Researcher at CIBNOR

"The Santuario Cimarrón is a great effort by the UABC Foundation to preserve an extraordinary place for the benefit of present and future generations."

        — Pascal Beltrán del Río. Journalist

"This project is a great legacy for Baja Californians and Mexicans.”

        — Alfredo Ibarra. Donor of the UABC Foundation

"The place, the project is fabulous."

        —  Gabriela Coria. Alumni UABC

"This project is a great effort, very much appreciated, hopefully they will be able to continue to support the conservation, the preservation of one of our university symbols."

        — Sandra Mariela Sánchez. Alumni UABC

"The Sierra de la Asamblea is all a wonderful dream: very starry sky at night; beautiful surroundings, seen before, but not admired as these days".

        — Salvador Jiménez. UABC Foundation Associate

sierra de la asamblea

The Sierra de la Asamblea is cataloged as a sky island because at its peak, at 1,200 meters above sea level, is the only coniferous forest that exists in the central region of the Baja California Peninsula, which is surrounded by hundreds of kilometers of desert that isolates it from any other similar ecosystem.

This situation causes that the place has a high biological value, because the desert acts as a barrier that prevents the dispersion of organisms, it is possible to find several endemic species, that is, that live only in this place, and relict species that were abundant in previous geological eras, but are now confined to the heights of the mountain range because only there they have the necessary conditions to survive.

Bighorn Sheep

The bighorn sheep (Ovis canadensis) is the most emblematic wildlife species of the state of Baja California. These animals are characterized by the massive, curved, spiral horns of adult males, a structure they use to fight for the right to mate and for dominance in the herds. Females also have horns, but they only extend backward to form a crescent.

There are six subspecies (breeds) of bighorn sheep: two are mountain sheep, O. c. canadensis and O. c. sierrae; the other four are desert sheep, O. c. nelsoni, O. c. mexicana, O. c. cremnobates, and O. c. weemsi. These subspecies differ in size, coat color, and skull and horn size. The four subspecies of desert bighorn sheep live in Mexico, and two of them converge in the state of Baja California: O. c. nelsoni and O. c. cremnobates.

Bighorn Sheep Frequently Asked Questions

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