Posa La Arenilla Mudflat
Address: The main observation area is located at Tovar 509, La Punta 07021, Peru. Coordinates at the observation area are Lat: -12.07232, Lon: -77.16053. View on the map below.
Biodiversity: 110 (?)
Photography: Great photo opportunities. However, light conditions can be challenging on foggy days during the winter months of June through October.
Bird-Watching Photography Self-guided Nature Walk
Walking Trails Observation Stations Limited Parking Information Panels Recreation Areas
What Can I See?
These are the most characteristic birds at Posa La Arenilla Mudflat. The photo gallery includes conspicuous, common, and those considered a specialty bird for the site of a list of approximately 110 species that have been recorded at this site. Species included in the photo gallery give an idea of the birds likely to be seen and photographed on a visit to this site.
The caption for each photo contains the species name, measurements, abundance, and habitat type where the bird is more frequently seen.
Intertidal flats are those areas of mud or sandy mud that are affected by the rising and falling of the tides. These flats are often submerged, but are gradually exposed as the tide lowers. At low tide a portion of the Posa La Arenilla is drained, exposing mudflats. Photo: Carlos Castro.
Rocks Used as Perch
Currents and tides of an ocean can gradually wash away a beach or other features along the coastline. A jetty, which created the Posa (lagoon) La Arenilla, was built to protect the coastline from the currents and tides. The jetty was made of large rocks that encloses the lagoon. The jetty are used as perch by seabirds and by foraging shorebirds such as Surfbirds. Photo: Zulema T.
Shallow Saltwater Pools
Shallow pools subject to tidal action and plenty of sunlight constitute prime foraging habitat for shorebirds. Nutrient-rich sediments and sunlight create a suitable habitat for the growth of algae, mussels, clams, as well as marine worms, sand crabs, limpets and other small invertebrates, which constitutes the diet of American Oystercatchers. Photo: Jorge Podesta.
Environmental Education Onsite
Observation points and trails are equiped with information panels explaining what is in front of a visitor at such point. Posa La Arenilla is used as a natural classroom to involve municipal workers and school children in Environmental education issues involving coastal marine ecosystems.
- View of an observation point from Tovar street, which runs along Posa La Arenilla.
- View of the West Inlet. Saltwater flows into the lagoon and moves Eastward on a very slow fashion.
- Educational material used by environmental education instructors.
- Sign announcing the Municipal protected area Posa La Arenilla.
Map of Posa La Arenilla Mudflat
Explore layers (click on ) or icons on the map.
Posa La Arenilla is a lagoon enclosed by a jetty. The mudflat (blue polygon) is located towards the western portion of the lagoon. Tovar Street and Malecon Wiese run alongside the lagoon and affords views of foraging and loafing birds at various points of the mudflat. Numbered icons offer additional information.
Visit Posa La Arenilla
Posa La Arenilla Mudflat is considered a man-made coastal wetland. The coastal lagoon and mudflat resulted from the construction of a rock jetty to protect the adjacent oceanfront from marine erosion. Posa La Arenilla is now protected by a municipal ordinance and encompasses an area of 18 hectares (44 acres).
The lagoon has two inlets or access/release of water. Initially, the lagoon created had a more uniform depth that ranged between 1-3 meters. Over the decades the West inlet accumulated sediments near the entrance point and became a shallow intertidal mudflat. The water in the lagoon circulates at such a slow rate that some consider it stagnant. Posa La Arenilla now has a shallow intertidal Western side and a deeper lagoon on the Eastern side. The lagoon area is used for the practice of rowing sports.
Posa La Arenilla is a large municipal park with sports facilities and a sidewalk and paths along most of the lagoon and mudflat. The sidewalk and observation points are equipped with educational information panels. The site has become an important site for birdwatchers, water sports, and for instruction on environmental education on coastal ecosystems.
Plan your Trip
The time that takes to get to Posa La Arenilla will depend on your location in the city of Lima and the mode of transportation used.
This site is mostly visited by school children, sports people, and local neighbors. It can turn crowded during weekdays at times when school children are on the site. But if you are there to observe birds, it is easy to distance yourself from the crowds by exploring areas with fewer people at a time.
We recommend find out the tide schedule and visit the site during low tide when birds are foraging or resting on the mudflats. During high tide, birds will be on the jetty, which is more distant from the observation points.
There is a sidewalk that runs along most of the lagoon and mudflat, which is equipped with information panels. There is not live assistance unless municipal workers are onsite.
There are convenience stores and restaurants in the general area. Ask a local for one if needed.
Where to eat/Where to Stay
There are convenience stores (tiendas) and restaurants in la Punta District. An online search should provide multiple options. Alternatively, ask locals for recommendations about places to eat.
Staying at a local hotel to explore Posa La Arenilla may not be warranted as the site can be explored in only a few hours.
The best time to visit
December through late March is considered the prime time to visit Posa La Arenilla. This time period corresponds to the time Boreal or northern migratory birds are wintering in the Neotropics. The vast majority of birds found at Posa La Arenilla is composed by Boreal migratory birds.
This site should be visited during the low tide, which is when all birds are either foraging on the mudflat or loafing on it. Check tide schedules Here >>.
For photographers, the months between December through late March are also the best months to visit Posa La Arenilla as the light for photography is better. Light for photography can be challenging during the winter months and there are not as many birds present onsite.
How to get there
One can get to Posa La Arenilla using public or private transportation.
- Public Transportation: There are multiple public transportation minivans (Combis) and buses that go to the district of La Punta. Ask anyone and is likely that there is a route you can take near your location in Lima. Once you get to la Punta, Posa La Arenilla will be within walking distance.
- Private Transportation: This is the recommended option as you will have more control over your time to arrive, enjoy the place, and leave in comfort. A group of people sharing costs would make the trip more affordable.
What to do/Where to go there
The streets Malecon Wiese and Tovar run along the entire length of Posa La Arenilla. You can walk along these two streets looking for foraging and loafing birds to see or photograph.
Where to look for birds
Posa la Arenilla is divided into two loosely define sections. The Western section, which is where the mudflat is located and the Eastern section or lagoon where rowing sports activities take place. Most of the bird activity occurs in the mudflat during low tide.
The rock jetty is used by birds for perching particularly during high tides.
What to wear and bring
Prepare for temperatures ranging from 14-20 degrees Celcius (58-68 Fahrenheit) and some drizzle during the winter months. Temperatures during the summer months range between 70-85 degrees Fahrenheit (21-29 degrees Celcius). Dress accordingly and wear comfortable shoes.
Although the area is generally safe, do not leave your belongings and valuable equipment unattended.