Current Projects

ECAP-UNM: Three-Dimensional Tunnel Recording, 2020
Funds were requested to support tunnel survey field work from January 11 – March 11, 2020. The documentation of the tunnels in the Copan Acropolis occurred under the auspices of the Early Copan Archaeological Project and in collaboration with Harvard University.

Project to Save Rosalila, 2019
Funding was provided to support emergency conservation effort to save the Rosalila structure.  These resources, along with others received from the Honduran private sector, are being used primarily to help finance the scanning of the building using cutting edge Lidar technology as a necessary first step in a larger conservation program.

Inventory, Cataloguing and Housing the Peter D. Harrison Collection Library 2019
The Peter D. Harrison collection of over 3500 books on Mesoamerica was donated in its entirely to the Copan Association arriving at its offices on November 21, 2019.  Funding was used to purchase storage cabinets, library software and help pay temporary personnel to inventory, catalog, and store the collection. 

ECAP-UNM: Conservation Activities, 2018
Funding requested as part of the Early Copán Acropolis Program’s (ECAP) 2018 Research and Conservation Project.  The activities took place at the Centro Regional de Investigaciones Arqueológicas (CRIA), the research, conservation, and storage facility for the archaeological site of Copán Ruinas.  Work was from February 5-23, 2018 and is completed.  The project targeted the burial offerings and human remains from royal tombs excavated in previous seasons by ECAP, including those of the dynastic founder (Ruler 1), K’inich Yax K’uk’ Mo’, interred in the Hunal Tomb, the woman in the associated Margarita Tomb, and the individual believed to be Wi’ Yohl K’inich (Ruler 8), found in the Sub-Jaguar Tomb.

Casa Sharer  2017
:  For over 25 years this property served as housing to students of archaeology doing research in Copan Ruinas, Honduras.  In 2013 the estate of Dr. Robert Sharer donated the property to the Copan Association with the request that future use of the property continue as long term residential housing for researchers and students. Casa Sharer is meant to provide long term secure safe accommodations to students and researchers who require housing while in Copan.  Casa Sharer is located in the village of Copan Ruinas, Honduras in a well-developed neighborhood.  It is easily accessible by taxi or private car and is within a 10 minute walk to the center of town.  There is a large fully equipped kitchen and furnished common area;  twice weekly garbage pickup; 2 large water holding tanks; and hot water showers.  Property is enclosed with privacy fencing and a large locked gate with a private parking area for several vehicles.  This is a fully furnished house with 3 private bedrooms; 3 baths, kitchen; large common area.  Linens included fully equipped kitchen (stove, dishware, refrigerator, pots, pans, utensils etc.).
The neighborhood has small family run stores where food, water, and snacks can be purchased.  There are also several neighborhood women who operate meal service out of their houses. It is a 10 minute walk to the central park of the village of Copan where there are restaurants; coffee shops; markets; and shopping areas. Contact or 504 2651 4103 for availability. 

Casa K’inich Repairs and Update of Exhibits is ongoing.  As of March 2020 the museum is closed due to the COVID 19 Pandemic.


Donaldo Martinez has taught conservation for five years at village  schools

Parrots in Freedom, Beauty Returns The Scarlet Macaw is the National Bird of Honduras and in 2011 an educational program funded by the Copan Maya Foundation was developed to teach adults and children how to protect it in the wild. As of 2018 over 6000 youths have participated in the program.  The program provides handout materials and culminates in an annual “Festival de la Guara Roja” or “Scarlet Macaw Festival” with children from area schools participating.  Educational modules on the conservation of the Scarlet Macaw are available free in PDF by clicking any of the links below.  At present they are only available in Spanish.

Caracteristicas de la guara roja

Hábitat de la Guara Roja

Alimentación de la Guara Roja

Reproduccion de la Guara Roja

La Guara Roja en el Mundo Maya

Amenazas para la Guara Roja

La Guara Roja dentro del Mundo Maya en Copán

Guaras en Libertad

Education has changed current thinking of youths in the area from capturing and selling the birds to developing an appreciation for an ecosystem where the Scarlet Macaw can be free and not a pet.  The “Festival of Guaras” has become an  annual event in the local community.

Completion of Technical Registers, Archival Updates and Storage of Archaeological Materials from Tomb 08-01 in the Oropendola Temple
Tomb 08-01 belongs to one of the earliest rulers of Copan dated to about 450 to 500 A.D.  It yielded a large sample of ceramic pots, jade necklaces and earrings, and exotic marine shells. As required by Honduran law, the materials from this tomb are housed in Copan’s archaeological research center (CRIA).  In 2015 the Copan Association received critical support from CMF in order to complete the primary registers, archival updates and storage of archaeological materials from Tomb 08-01 in the Oropéndola Temple.  More than 1000 artifacts coming from this tomb and made of shell, pearl, greenstone (jade), pyrite, mica, bone and other materials were measured, weighed, photographed and registered. Ceramic materials from the tomb and its surrounding context were also analyzed. This process included the cleaning, marking, re-packaging and storing of about 17,500 potsherds. Complimentary field data was also gathered and recorded with photographs and drawings. In all, the work carried out by this project, both in the laboratory and in the field, generated more than 4,000 digital images.  As part of this effort, we also rescued, sorted, standardized and housed the data from six old computers that the Copan Association has used over the years as part of the research on Temple 10L-16. The information on these units is valuable reference material and is now housed in the Copan Association library as well as in the CRIA.

Casa K’inich Teachers’ Guidebook: This teachers’ guidebook helps teachers get the most out of their visit to Copan and the Casa K’inich Childrens Museum.  The book has been completely re-written by author Dr. Dorie Reents-Budet and is available for free at the offices of the Copan Association in Copan, Honduras.  You can also request a copy email at

Support to Honduran Students: Many Hondurans studying Maya-related topics at a university have limited scholarships and income to augment their educational experiences with books, fieldwork and symposium. The foundation believes an educated Honduran presence is essential to the management and preservation of Copan and the rest of Honduran patrimony, so we offer support for travel expenses to Honduran students studying topics that will help them care for Honduran national patrimony and want to visit Copan to do so.