Environmental reserves

ARIE of the Camaratuba River (Sanctuary of the Uçá Crab)

Classified as AIRE (Area of Relevant Ecological Interest), the initials of conservation unit indicate extraordinary natural characteristics and the first reasons to see the crabs, closely.

There are innumerous reasons to grab a car, enter the Potiguara Trail and come to meet the Uçá Crab Ecological Park, located on the Camaratuba’s Bar district, Mataraca County.

Created to protect reminiscent areas of mangroves and one of its distinguished residents, the uçá crab, which is an endangered species, this region is destined to provoke exclamations.

There are 160 hectares of area predicates of all orders.

Classified as AIRE (Area of Relevant Ecological Interest), the initials of conservation unit indicate extraordinary natural characteristics and the first reasons to see the crabs, closely.

The top of the hill of the Potiguara village, Cumaru, which is frontier with the preservation area, displays a panoramic view that exposes the impressive landscape composition. The colorful scenery is similar to a painting, whose was inspired on the mangrove, at the mouth of the Camaratuba River and the paradisiacal beaches, whether to the South, inside indigenous lands, or to the North where bathe the simple fishing village.

Contemplations apart, it is possible to experiment the Camaratuba’s Bar region’s wild nature in more exciting strata, as in the fluctuations through the mangroves waterways or enjoying, over a surf and kitesurf boards, the strong winds that blow here.


The mangroves have noble functions on the food chain and reproduction of many animal species. To have plenty of nutrients and offer shelter, they serve as nurseries, mainly for fishes, mollusks, birds and crustaceans.

The latter are represented by the aratu crab, with its red carapace, the guaiamum, of blueish color, and the uçá, that had its collect prohibited, for being target before its first reproduction, which is given only with 3.5 years.

Some species of amphibious, reptiles and marine mammals also use the natural riches of this fundamental seashore ecosystem. Even manatees have already been observed swimming through the mangrove waterways.


The Uçá Crab Ecological Park is a legitimate crustacean’s condo. As could not be otherwise, has the mangrove, as its main ecosystem.

The region around it, however, presents significant portions of sandbank vegetation, medium sized, and bushy sandbank vegetation, thinner, that covers most of the dunes with their fixative vegetation.

It is worth noting the occurrence of fragments of Atlantic Woods.

The mangrove and the fight to the greenhouse effect

A recent study, made by the USA Forest Service, of the Helsinque University and the International Forest Research Center, has indicated that mangroves manage to store four times more the amount of carbon dioxide than any forest in the world.

The discovery increases the already known importance of this ecosystem to the environment and puts in evidence the great abuse of its deforestation.

About a fifth of the world’s mangroves were lost since 1980, and continue do diminish with rates four times higher than global forests.

With this deforestation and recent discovery of the mangroves’ capacity, to store carbon dioxide, one can imagine the amount of gases, responsible by the greenhouse effect, that were dumped on the atmosphere.


Mangrove fluctuation

The waterways labyrinth tour is made with buoys that allow people to be carried by the stream of tidal power.

On the ebb tide, which occurs when the river flows towards the sea, the experience lasts, on average, 40 minutes and can only be performed with an accredited guide. The tour starts on one of the mangrove’s arms and follows until the Camaratuba’s River mouth. The route, on the opposite way, is performed on the high tide. The unusual attraction leaves the mouth, follows the riverbed, to then enter the mangrove, through one of its many holes. Level: light. Duration: 40 minutes.

Quadricycle to Guaju’s River Bar

On the border with Rio Grande do Norte. Level: light. Duration: 1 hour

Surf and Kitesurf practice

Strong and steady winds, up to 28 knots, are the business card for the practitioners of both modalities.


The name of this environmental entity, non-profit, is self-explanatory. The uçá crab is fading of the mangroves and cries for help for its survival.

The NGO, in partnership with the public sector, the private sector and the Federal University of Paraíba, stablished two goals to be reached on the Uçá Crab Ecological Park and on the local community of Camaratuba’s Bar. The first is to take advantage of the Wildlife Refuge area in order to preserve and restock the crustacean, through the developments of its larval and juvenile stages at a pilot laboratory.

The focus of the second objective is not on the mangrove preservation, but on the social inclusion of the population that lives around it, by sustainable basis tourism. The actions developed are the capacitation of the crab collectors to work as the park’s environmental monitors, the handmade production with local manpower with the “uçá crab” theme, the capacitation of the community’s youngsters to act as tourist guides, and the development of local cuisine focused on crabs, captured in an environmentally correct manner.

Veja também:

Back to the top