TMCFs worldwide have been disappearing rapidly. They face localized threats such as fragmentation and deforestation resulting from human population pressure. Consequently, TMCFs are high on the list of the world’s most threatened terrestrial ecosystems. To date, these rare ecosystems occupy about 0.14% of the entire land surface of the planet.
The most recognizable and defining feature of a TMCF is frequent cloud cover, which produces unique climate conditions. Rainfall is often heavy, and condensation occurs due to cooling of moisture-laden air currents deflected upward by the mountains. Research suggests that the timing, strength and frequency of cloud cover is fluctuating due to climate change (rising temperatures).
TMCFs are home to an incredible number of plant and animal species with high rates of endemism. Unfortunately, they are extremely vulnerable to a host of anthropogenic pressures such as unsustainable logging, cattle grazing and hunting.
TMCF are found along the Caribbean coast of eastern Panama at elevations ranging from 500 and 1,000 m (1,650 to 3,300 feet), which includes the reaches of Mamoní Valley Preserve.