El único Panamá - Week 48
Welcome to our weekly series about the uniqueness of Panama!
Panama is one of the most orchid-rich countries in the world with estimates of up to 1,200 known species! The Orchid Family has the greatest number of plant species in the world with close to 30,000 worldwide. The diversity of orchids is best found in the tropics. However, local orchid populations are in danger of extinction due to the destruction of rain forests, over harvesting and traffickers depriving them of their natural habitat.
Panama´s National Flower is an orchid known as the Espiritu Santo Flower (flower of the Holy Spirit). Unfortunately, it is included on the list of endangered plants according to the Washington Treaty on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora. There are a number of sponsorship programs in Panama set up to save the orchids from extinction.