Included here are the tropical lowlands and shores of Mexico and all other parts of Central America south of Mexico including Guatemala, Honduras, San Salvador, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, much of Panama and the Revilla Gigedo Islands.

Mosquitia Pine Savanna

Included here is the Mosquitia savanna zone of Honduras. Resembling the pine flats of Florida and Louisiana, these open park-like savannas are mainly characterized by the presence of sedges, particularly Rhynchosporum globosa, and could have been possibly more appropriately called sedge savanna. The most conspicuous tree is Pinus caribaea, while other common woody species are Byrsonima crassifolia and the endemic oak Quercus oleoides (Fagaceae). Rhynchosporum globosa forms ceapitose tussocks while other abundant herbaceous species, often growing between the tussocks, include Paspalum pulchellum, Rhynchosporum barbata, R. chapmannii, Tonina fluviatilis and Utricularia subulata. In slightly dryer areas Bulbostylis paradoxa and Declieuxia fruticosa become more conspicuous. Most of the herbaceous vegetation grows between 2-3 dm tall, but thickets of Paurotis wrightii are common in wet areas.  On slightly higher ground shrubs of Davilla kunthii and Quercus oleoides can predominate.  Other endemic species include shrubs such Miconia hondurensis (Melastomataceae), Tabernaemontana chrysocarpa (Apocynaceae) and the herb Aciotis rostellata (Melastomataceae).


Clewell, A. E. 1986. Observations on the vegetation of the Mosquitia in Honduras. Sida, 11: 258-270.

Hartshorn, G. S. 1989. Tropical and subtropical vegetation of meso-America. In: North American Terrestrial Vegetation. Eds. M. G. Barbour and W. D. Billings. Cambridge University Press.

Janzen, D. H. 1983. Costa Rican Natural History. The University of Chicago Press.

Leopold, A. S. 1950. Vegetation zones of Mexico. Ecology, 31: 507-518.

Parsons, J. J. 1955. The miskito pine savanna of Nicaragua and Honduras. Annals of the Association of American Geographers, 45: 36-63.

Sarimiento, G. 1983. The Savannas of Tropical America. In: Ecosystems of the World 13 - Tropical Savannas. Ed. F. Bourliere. Elsevier Scientific Publishing Company.

Sawyer, J. O. & Lindsey, A. A. 1971. Vegetation of life zones in Costa Rica. Indiana Academy of Science, Monograph 2: 1-214.

Taylor, B. W. 1963. An outline of the vegetation of Nicaragua. Journal of Ecology, 51: 27-54.