State Park of Ilha Grande
Ilha Grande State Park is a conservation unit created in 1971, whose area was expanded in 2007 to more than 60% of the total area of the Island. It was created with the objective of preserving the natural ecosystems of great ecological importance and scenic beauty; To enable scientific research; And provide the development of environmental education and interpretation, recreation in contact with nature and ecological tourism. Within the area of the Park are several points of interest for tourists, such as Lopes Mendes, Dois Rios, Preta, Parnaioca and Pico do Papagaio.
A little of history
In the last 250 years Ilha Grande has been influenced by man transforming the landscape, and interfering with the environment. During the colonial period, activities were carried out on the island to extract wood, from whale oil. In the 19th century on the Island coffee and sugar cane were planted. At the time of the prisons, deforestation continued for the extraction of firewood for the preparation of food and other purposes. According to historical records, much of the native forest to the altitudes of 600 to 700 meters was devastated, reduced to forest fragments. Some native species that appear in reports of explorers, are no longer found on the island. At the same time several exotic species were introduced, either for food reasons or for the construction of houses and fences. Some of the exotic species that proliferated the most in the Island is the Jaqueira, fruit trees that come to form exclusive forests in some points of the Island, especially at low altitude. There are also some species of bamboo, with less dispersing capacity. The present forest cover of the Ilha Grande, although it seems homogeneous if seen of the boats or in overflights, is a mosaic of vegetations in different stages of recovery. So conserving the vegetation cover, and contributing to its recovery fully is of paramount importance in Ilha Grande. Tourism is the activity that has less impact on the vegetation cover, therefore the more sustainable.