According to the new map of forest cover and land use of Honduras that was built in 2018, the total forested area of Honduras has been reassessed at 6.3 million hectares (ha), equivalent to 56% of the national territory, not including agroforestry, secondary vegetation, savannahs and other forms of vegetation cover.
At the end of 2018, the growing area under forest management reached 421,773 ha (2016: 278,720 ha), in 871 management plans currently in force (2016: 614), with an estimated productive capacity (annual growth) of 700,554 m3 per year (2016: 551,362 m3), and it is distributed according to land tenure as follows (Source: ICF Forest Statistical Annuary 2018, Chap. 3):
- 50 Management plans on national land with 101,273 ha;
- 15 Management plans on Ejidal (municipal) land with 67,342 ha; and
- 806 Management plans on private land with 252,922 ha.
In terms of deforestation, most of the forests that are located close to urban centres have been exploited without proper control to be used for firewood and raw construction timber. The total loss of forest in Honduras over 2000 – 2016 was approximately 372,857 ha, with an average annual loss rate of 23,304 ha/yr (2006 – 2012 being the period with the greatest deforestation rate). The ecosystem that was most affected by deforestation is the evergreen broadleaved rainforest, with an average loss of 17,408 ha/yr, followed by the deciduous broadleaved forest (3,187 ha/yr), the coniferous forest (2,635 ha/yr) and the mangrove forest (75 ha/yr).
The average recovery of forests in Honduras over the same period was 2,353 ha/yr (2000 – 2006 being the period with the highest increase). The ecosystem that presented the greatest activity in terms of forest recovery is the broadleaf rainforest with an average annual gain of 1,285 ha/yr. (ICF, Forest Statistical Annuary 2018, Chap. 2)