Magdalena River Valley

The Magdalena River Valley (Spanish: Valle del Río Magdalena) is a valley in Colombia located within the Colombian Andes. The valley is specifically situated between the Central and Eastern Ranges and crossed by the river of the same name, the Magdalena River.

Magdalena River Valley
Valle del Río Magdalena
Rio Magdalena map.png
Magdalena River in its valley
Magdalena River Valley is located in Colombia
Magdalena River Valley
Magdalena River Valley
Barrancabermeja in the Magdalena Valley
Long-axis directionNorth-south
TypeRiver valley
LocationAndean natural region
Population centersBarrancabermeja, Ibagué, Honda
Borders onCentral Ranges
Eastern Ranges
Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta
Caribbean Sea
Coordinates7°03′34.9″N 73°51′11.1″W / 7.059694°N 73.853083°W / 7.059694; -73.853083Coordinates: 7°03′34.9″N 73°51′11.1″W / 7.059694°N 73.853083°W / 7.059694; -73.853083
RiversMagdalena River


The Magdalena River Valley was formed after a series of tectonic formed depressions that filled up with continental sediment in the Tertiary period. These sediments came from the Central Ranges of the Colombian Andes.[1] The Magdalena Valley, subdivided into the Upper (VSM), Middle (VMM) and Lower Magdalena Valleys (VIM), is an important area for oil exploration in Colombia.[2]

Flora and faunaEdit


The first recorded European contact with the potato was in 1537 in the Magdalena Valley. The Spanish invaders became familiar with the crop and it was probably around 1570 when a Spanish ship first introduced potatoes to Europe.[3]


The Magdalena River Valley is home to a species of butterfly, Magdalena Valley ringlet or Splendeuptychia ackeryi, first identified in 2009.[4] There are many endangered mammals and birds found in the region, including the brown spider monkey and the endemic blue-billed curassow and white-mantled barbet. These species are threatened by habitat loss, among other factors.


  1. ^ (in Spanish) Historia de la Geología en Colombia Archived 2007-10-27 at the Wayback Machine
  2. ^ García, D.F, and P. Parra. 2003. Área con Mayor Potencial de Carga de Petróleo: Cuenca Valle Medio del Magdalena (VMM) y Occidente de la Cordillera Oriental, Colombia, 253. Asociación Colombiana de Geólogos y Geofisicos del Petróleo (ACGGP). Accessed 2017-03-13.
  3. ^ Simmonds, Norman Willison. 1976. Evolution of Crop Plants, 1-339. Longman. Accessed 2017-03-13.
  4. ^ "Moustache helps identify butterfly". Natural History Museum, London. Archived from the original on February 24, 2009. Retrieved 2015-12-02.