The Southern Plateau comprises the north and center of Oaxaca as well as the center of Chiapas.
In this part of Oaxaca, principal flora and fauna include sacred fir, ocotero pine, ash, encino oak, juniper, ahuehuete, causarina, royal poinciana, palo mulato and cazahuate, among which live tzentzontle, goldfinch, swallow, lark, badger, raccoon, squirrel, falcon, eagle, tlacuache, deer, mountain lions and armadillo.
Chiapas’s central depression borders an extensive mountainous area within which a number of zones can be distinguished: high plains, eastern mountains and northern mountains, with high plains the most extensive part of the state. Despite its varied topography, there are plains from which up-to-3000-feet-above-sea-level peaks emerge; the combination of warm, dry weather in the low plains and a cold, humid climate in the high plains, make for a combination of savannah, tropical forest and oak groves as well as other species such as grasses, cazahuates, ash, laurel and royal poinciana, home to tepezcuintles, tigrillo, boar, monkeys, anteaters, lizards and jaguars.
Oaxaca’s principal economic activities are related to ranching and farming produce such as pineapple, coffee, cattle and goats.
In Chiapas, major economic activities are related to electricity generation, logging, and ranching/farming bananas, coffee coconut oil, mango, papaya, corn and cattle, as well as mining and the exploitation of natural resources such as sulfur.