Valdes and the Patagonian Coast

A Marine Mammal Area of Global Significance

Map of the Month: Valdes, Patagonian Coast and Patagonian Shelf

Map boundaries: 40 to 50 degrees South; 55 to 66 degrees West

Country: Argentina (The map area includes the administrative part of Buenos Aires province in Patagonia, coastal Rio Negro and Chubut provinces, and Cape Blanco of Santa Cruz province)


Although inland areas of Patagonia are known for being semiarid and cold, the Patagonian coast is a site of global significance for conservation of marine mammals. Tourism centers around the Valdes Peninsula of Chubut, which harbors thousands of sea lions, killer whales, right whales, southern elephant seals, and fur seals. Other sites along the coast are nesting sites for penguins. Fossils may be found in cliff faces along coastal Rio Negro. The most important fossil finds in Patagonia, including dinosaurs, are displayed in a museum in Trelew. The area is also noted for its human communities, including Welsh settlements along the Rio Chubut. Continue reading