46.5% —or about 18,475,000 hectares—of Paraguay is forested. Of this, 10.0% —or roughly 1,850,000 hectares—is classified as primary forest, the most biodiverse form of forest.

Change in Forest Cover: Between 1990 and 2000, Paraguay lost an average of 178,900 hectares of forest per year. The amounts to an average annual deforestation rate of 0.85%. Between 2000 and 2005, the rate of forest change increased by 9.1% to 0.92% per annum. In total, between 1990 and 2005, Paraguay lost 12.7% of its forest cover, or around 2,682,000 hectares. Measuring the total rate of habitat conversion (defined as change in forest area plus change in woodland area minus net plantation expansion) for the 1990-2005 interval, Paraguay lost 12.8% of its forest and woodland habitat.

Biodiversity and Protected Areas: Paraguay has some 1084 known species of amphibians, birds, mammals and reptiles according to figures from the World Conservation Monitoring Centre. Of these, 1.5% are endemic, meaning they exist in no other country, and 3.7% are threatened. Paraguay is home to at least 7851 species of vascular plants. 3.5% of Paraguay is protected under IUCN categories I-V.

Paraguay Environmental profile


Paraguay: Forest Cover, 2005
Total Land Area (ha)39,730,000
Total Forest Area (ha)18,475,000
Percent Forest Cover46.50%
Primary Forest Cover (ha)1,850,000
Primary Forest, % total forest10.01%
Primary Forest, % total land4.66%
Other wooded land (ha)-

Paraguay : Forest types
Tropical (% forest area)100%
Subtropical (% forest area)0%
Temperate (% forest area)0%
Boreal/polar (% forest area)0%

Paraguay: Breakdown of forest types, 2005
Primary forest (ha | %)1,850,00010.0%
Modified natural (ha | %)16,582,00089.8%
Semi-natural (ha | %)--
Production plantation (ha | %)43,0000.2%
Production plantation (ha | %)--

Paraguay: Change in Forest Cover
Forest 1990 (ha)21,157,000
Forest 2000 (ha)19,368,000
Forest 2005 (ha)18,475,000
Annual Change 1990-2000 (ha | %)(178,900)-0.85%
Annual Change 2000-2005 (ha | %)(178,600)-0.92%
Total Change 1990-2005 (ha | %)(2,682,000)-12.68%
Change in rate (%)9.05%
Primary 1990 (ha)1,850,000
Primary 2000 (ha)1,850,000
Primary 2005 (ha)1,850,000
Annual Change 1990-2000 (ha | %)-0.00%
Annual Change 2000-2005 (ha | %)-0.00%
Total Change 1990-2005 (ha | %)-0.00%
Change in rate (%)#DIV/0!
Other 1990 (ha)-
Other 2000 (ha)-
Other 2005 (ha)-
Annual Change 1990-2000 (ha | %)--
Annual Change 2000-2005 (ha | %)--
Total Change 1990-2005 (ha | %)--
Change in rate (%)-
Other 1990 (ha)23,000
Other 2000 (ha)36,000
Other 2005 (ha)43,000
Annual Change 1990-2000 (ha | %)1,3005.65%
Annual Change 2000-2005 (ha | %)1,4003.89%
Total Change 1990-2005 (ha | %)20,00086.96%
Change in rate (%)-31.20%
Forest area+Wooded Area-Plantations
Other 1990 (ha)21,134,000
Other 2000 (ha)19,332,000
Other 2005 (ha)18,432,000
Annual Change 1990-2000 (ha | %)(180,200)-0.85%
Annual Change 2000-2005 (ha | %)(180,000)-0.93%
Total Change 1990-2005 (ha | %)(2,702,000)-12.79%
Change in rate (%)9.20%

Paraguay: Primary
Primary or "old-growth" vegetation
Primary Forest 2005 (ha)1,850,000
Other primary wooded land 2005 (ha)-
Other primary wooded land 2005 (ha)1,850,000
Undisturbed vegetation 2005 (% land area)4.66%

Paraguay: Forest designation
Ownership of forest land, 2000
Public (%)-
Private (%)-
Other (%)-
Ownership of other wooded land, 2000
Public (%)-
Private (%)-
Other (%)-
Designated functions of forest – primary function 2005
Production (%)0.2%
Protection (%)0.0%
Conservation (%)10.0%
Social Services (%)0.0%
Multiple Services (%)0.0%
None of Unknown (%)89.8%

Paraguay: Disturbances affecting forest land 2000
Forest Area annually affected by
Fire (%)-
Insects (ha)-
Diseases (ha)-
Other (ha)-

Paraguay: Protected areas
Protected areas
Biosphere reserves, 2005
Wetlands of international importance (Ramsar sites), 20056
World Heritage sites, 20041
Protected Areas: IUCN categories I-V, percent of total land3.5%
Protected Areas: IUCN categories Ia, Ib, and II, extent, percent of total land3.33%
Protected Areas: IUCN categories III, IV, and V, percent of total land, 20040.09%
Protected Areas: IUCN categories VI and other, percent of total land, 20040.00%

Paraguay: Biodiversity - Wildlife
total species76
endemic species2
threatened species0
total species696
endemic species7
threatened species27
total species168
endemic species3
threatened species11
total species144
endemic species4
threatened species2
Wildlife diversity
total species1084
endemic species16
threatened species40

Paraguay: Biodiversity - Plants
Growing stock composition
3 most common species
% of total growing stock
Growing stock composition
3 most common species
% of total growing stock
Number of Native tree species
Native tree species-
Number of tree species in IUCN red list
Critically Endangered0
Vascular Plant Species, 2004
Number endemic0
Number of Threatened Plant Species, 2004
Species threatened10

Paraguay: Value of forests
Biomass stock in forest, 2005
Above-ground biomass (M t)-
Below-ground biomass (M t)-
Dead wood (M t)-
Total (M t)-
Carbon stock in forest, 2005
Carbon in above-ground biomass (M t)-
Carbon in below-ground biomass (M t)-
Carbon in dead wood (M t)-
Carbon in litter (M t)-
Soil carbon (M t)-
Change in growing stock 1990 - 2005
Annual change rate (1000 cubic m/yr)
Growing stock per hectare 1990 - 2005
Annual change rate ( cubic m/ha per yr)
Wood removal 2005
Industrial roundwood (1000 cubic m)4,976
Wood fuel (1000 cubic m)6,847
Total wood removal 2005 (1000 cubic m)11,823
Total wood removal 2005 (% of growing stock)-
Plant products 2005
Food (t)-
Fodder (t)-
Raw material for medicine and aromatic products (t)-
Raw material for colorants and dyes (t)-
Raw material for utensils, handicrafts & construction (t)-
Ornamental plants (t)-
Exudates (t)-
Other plant products (t)-
Animal products 2005
Living animals (units)-
Hides, skins and trophies (units)-
Wild honey and bee-wax (t)-
Bush meat (t)-
Raw material for medicine and aromatic products (t)-
Raw material for colorants and dyes (t)-
Other edible animal products (t)-
Other non-edible animal products (t)-
Value of wood and non-wood forest product removal 2005
Industrial roundwood (US$)$252,680,000
Wood fuel (US$)$225,746,000
Non-wood forest products (US$)-
Total value (US$)$478,426,000
Total value ($USD/ha)$26
Employment in forestry 2000
Total people employed7,000

Paraguay : Production, trade and consumption of forest products, 2002
Woodfuel ('000 cubic m), 2002
Industrial roundwood ('000 cubic m), 2002
Sawnwood ('000 cubic m), 2002
Wood-based panels ('000 cubic m), 2002
Pulp for paper ('000 metric tons), 2002
Paper and paperboard ('000 metric tons), 2002
Paraguay: Environment
Environment - current issuesdeforestation; water pollution; inadequate means for waste disposal pose health risks for many urban residents; loss of wetlands
Environment - international agreementsparty to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Ozone Layer Protection, Wetlands
signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements
Natural hazardslocal flooding in southeast (early September to June); poorly drained plains may become boggy (early October to June)

Paraguay: Land use / Resources
Land use (%)arable land: 7.6%
permanent crops: 0.23%
other: 92.17% (2001)
Natural resourceshydropower, timber, iron ore, manganese, limestone

Paraguay: Economy
Economy - overview:Landlocked Paraguay has a market economy marked by a large informal sector. This sector features both reexport of imported consumer goods to neighboring countries as well as the activities of thousands of microenterprises and urban street vendors. Because of the importance of the informal sector, accurate economic measures are difficult to obtain. A large percentage of the population derives their living from agricultural activity, often on a subsistence basis. The formal economy grew by an average of about 3% annually in 1995-97, but averaged near-zero growth in 1998-2001 and contracted by 2.3 percent in 2002, in response to regional contagion and an outbreak of hoof-and-mouth desease. On a per capita basis, real income has stagnated at 1980 levels. Most observers attribute Paraguay's poor economic performance to political uncertainty, corruption, lack of progress on structural reform, substantial internal and external debt, and deficient infrastructure. Aided by a firmer exchange rate and perhaps a greater confidence in the economic policy of the Duarte FRUTOS administration, the economy rebounded from 2003 to 2005, posting modest growth each year.
GDP - per capita$4,900 (2005 est.)
GDP - real growth rate (%)3.3% (2005 est.)
Agriculture - productscotton, sugarcane, soybeans, corn, wheat, tobacco, cassava (tapioca), fruits, vegetables; beef, pork, eggs, milk; timber
GDP - composition by sector (%)agriculture: 27.5%, industry: 24%, services: 48.5% (2005 est.)
Industries sugar, cement, textiles, beverages, wood products, steel, metallurgic, electric power
Economic aid - recipientNA
Debt - external$3.535 billion (2005 est.)
Population below poverty line (%)32% (2005 est.)
Labor force - by occupation (%)agriculture 45%

Paraguay: Population / Demographics
Population (July 2005)6,347,884
Population growth rate (%) (2005)2.48%
Population density (people/sq km) (2005)16.0
Percent rural (2003)42.8%
Median age (years)total: 21.2 years
Total fertility rate (children born/woman)3.93 (2005 est.)
Ethnic groups (%)mestizo (mixed Spanish and Amerindian) 95%, other 5%

Largest Cities in Paraguay

Cities and urban areas in Paraguay with population over 100,000 All figures are estimates for 2002.

CityCountryCity PopulationUrban Area Population

 Environment, Land use / Resources, Economy, Population / Demographics, Infrastructure, Health -- CIA World Factbook, 2005
 Forest Cover, Forest types, Breakdown of forest types, Change in Forest Cover, Primary forests, Forest designation, Disturbances affecting forest land, Value of forests, Production, trade and consumption of forest products -- The FOOD AND AGRICULTURE ORGANIZATION OF THE UNITED NATIONS's Global Forest Resources Assessment (2005) and the State of the World’s Forests (2005, 2003, 2001)
 Protected Areas, Plant and animal biodiversity -- United Nations Environment Programme - World Conservation Monitoring Centre (UNEP-WCMC). 2004. World Database on Protected Areas.
 Biosphere reservers -- United Nations Education, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) - Man and Biosphere Program. 2004. UNESCO - MAB Biosphere Reserves Directory.
 RAMSAR sites -- The Bureau of the Convention on Wetlands . 2005. The Ramsar List of Wetlands of International Importance.
 World Resources Institute's EarthTrends web site
 The 2004 IUCN Red List of Threatened Species
 Population Data -- United Nations Population Fund
 With additional analysis by Rhett Butler of

Tropical rainforest information

 World Rainforests
 Rainforest Structure
 Rainforest Biodiversity
 Forest Floor
 Rainforest Waters
 Indigenous People
 Global Importance

 Rainforest Conservation
 Country Reports update soon
 Deforestation Tables
 The Amazon Rainforest update soon
 The Congo Rainforest update soon
 Deforestation in Brazil
 Rainforest Images

Mongabay Rainforests
Mongabay News
Mongabay Photos

what's new | rainforests home | help support the site | madagascar | search | about | contact

Copyright Rhett Butler 1994-2006

"Rainforest" is used interchangeably with "rain forest" on this site.
Same for "rainforests" and "rain forests". "Jungle" is generally not used.