National Geographic : 1967 Jan
told us. "Large landholdings must be efficient to survive. Ten years ago, two-thirds of the countryfolk in this region were tenant farm ers. Today 65 percent own their own land." In two Cessnas, we crossed the Rio de la Plata estuary to the gilt beaches and low coastal pastures of Uruguay. The Rio Santa Lucia flexed lazily across the flat, chocolate colored earth; this was the mineral-rich soil famous for great grasses and fat cattle. At Montevideo Airport we left Liz and Mary for a day with the YWCA. And here we were joined by Gabriel Caldevilla, first director of Uruguay's reorganized national park system, who guides the expansion of the nation's forest service. "We now have seven small national parks," Mr. Caldevilla told us as we flew northeast. "Uruguay has a tradition of conservation." He pointed out large areas of reforestation KODACHROMES(INCLUDING FOLLOWINGPAGES) BY GEORGEF. MOBLEY ( N.G.S . Fattened on lush pampas grass, beef cat tle bunch for a drive; mustachioed gaucho charges after a stray. Large herds of cattle and sheep enrich Uruguay but alarm con servationists by nibbling on tender palm shoots. Uruguayans protect the palms with fences and a national park at Cabo Polonio. Landowners have planted 300,000 acres of trees on previously unproductive land. Like a hundred Niagaras, Iguacu spreads thundering cataracts along two miles of scal loped cliffs; its sound rolls for 15 miles. A rainbow arches the torrent of Devil's Throat Chasm, boundary between Brazil (fore ground) and Argentina. Both nations pro tect Iguacu with national parks. Laurance Rockefeller, his back to the chasm, talks with Brazilian Natural Resources Director Dr. Joao Maria Belo Lisboa and amateur ornithologist Johan Dalgas Frisch.