Portal:Central America

The Central America Portal

Map of Central America

Central America is a subregion of the Americas. Its political boundaries are defined as bordering Mexico to the north, Colombia to the south, the Caribbean Sea to the east, and the Pacific Ocean to the west. Central America usually consists of seven countries: Belize, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, and Panama. Within Central America is the Mesoamerican biodiversity hotspot, which extends from northern Guatemala to central Panama. Due to the presence of several active geologic faults and the Central America Volcanic Arc, there is a high amount of seismic activity in the region, such as volcanic eruptions and earthquakes, which has resulted in death, injury, and property damage.

In the pre-Columbian era, Central America was inhabited by the Indigenous peoples of Mesoamerica to the north and west and the Isthmo-Colombian peoples to the south and east. Following the Spanish expedition of Christopher Columbus' voyages to the Americas, Spain began to colonize the Americas. From 1609 to 1821, the majority of Central American territories (except for what would become Belize and Panama, and including the modern Mexican state of Chiapas) were governed by the viceroyalty of New Spain from Mexico City as the Captaincy General of Guatemala. On 24 August 1821, Spanish Viceroy Juan de O'Donojú signed the Treaty of Córdoba, which established New Spain's independence from Spain. On 15 September 1821, the Act of Independence of Central America was enacted to announce Central America's separation from the Spanish Empire and provide for the establishment of a new Central American state. Some of New Spain's provinces in the Central American region (i.e. what would become Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador, Nicaragua and Costa Rica) were annexed to the First Mexican Empire; however in 1823 they seceded from Mexico to form the Federal Republic of Central America until 1838. (Full article...)

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The mantled howler (Alouatta palliata) is a species of howler monkey, a type of New World monkey, from Central and South America. It is one of the monkey species most often seen and heard in the wild in Central America. It takes its "mantled" name from the long guard hairs on its sides.

The mantled howler is one of the largest Central American monkeys, and males can weigh up to 9.8 kg (22 lb). It is the only Central American monkey that eats large quantities of leaves; it has several adaptations to this folivorous diet. Since leaves are difficult to digest and provide less energy than most foods, the mantled howler spends the majority of each day resting and sleeping. The male mantled howler has an enlarged hyoid bone, a hollow bone near the vocal cords, which amplifies the calls made by the male, and is the reason for the name "howler". Howling allows the monkeys to locate each other without expending energy on moving or risking physical confrontation. (Full article...)

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In the news

8 December 2023 – 2023 Guatemalan general election
The Guatemalan Attorney General's Office says that the results of the election are void and should be annulled, due to counting anomalies in the first round in June. (France 24)
5 December 2023 –
Ten people are killed when a bus falls into a ravine after crashing into a bridge near Tegucigalpa, Honduras. (Reuters via The Straits Times)
30 November 2023 –
Salvadoran President Nayib Bukele is granted a leave of absence prior to the 2024 general election and is succeeded by his private secretary Claudia Rodríguez de Guevara as acting president. (La Prensa Gráfica)
19 November 2023 –
Nicaragua completes its withdrawal from the Organization of American States. (La Prensa Latina) (La Prensa)
18 November 2023 – Miss Universe 2023
Miss Nicaragua Sheynnis Palacios is crowned Miss Universe by her predecessor, R'Bonney Gabriel, marking the country's first win in the pageant's history. (CNN)
16 November 2023 – 2023 Guatemalan general election
The Guatemalan Attorney General's Office requests that the immunity of President-elect Bernardo Arévalo and Vice President-elect Karin Herrera be lifted for their alleged participation in the seizure of the facilities of the Universidad de San Carlos de Guatemala. If the request is successful, Arévalo and Herrera could be arrested. (Bloomberg)


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