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SPEA is an Environmental not-for-profit organization whose mission is to support research and conservation of wild birds and their habitats, by promoting sustainable development for the benefit of future generations.
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Monteiroi task-force meeting on Graciosa Island marks the start of a new Age for the conservation of bird species at the European level


12th September 2016

Promoted by the Portuguese Society for the Study of Birds (SPEA), this meeting marks the beginning of a new Age for the conservation of bird species at European level.

In 2015 the European Commission has chosen BirdLife International to lead a project to define the guidelines for future Species Action Plans in Europe. That's how the Life EuroSAP emerged, a project that brings together 10 countries, 16 target species and 13 partners. In Portugal, the project has the representation of SPEA, which is responsible for leading the Monteiro's storm-petrel Action Plan. The EuroSAP is cofunded by LIFE Programme of the European Commission, the Secretariat of the Agreement on the Conservation of African-Eurasian Migratory Waterbirds (AEWA) and the MAVA Foundation.

 On September 8, a quick visit to the Praia islet, which holds one of the most important colonies of Monteiro's storm-petrel, marked the beginning of the European Action Plan planning session for the conservation of the only endemic seabird species of Azores. Subsequently, the working group, baptized in 2014 as Monteiroi Task-force, met in the municipal library of Santa Cruz da Graciosa to discuss the future of this species. The main threats to the species and the emergent actions that are needed to ensure the prosperity of the species have been identified. Were discussed not only the aspects related to Monteiro's storm-petrel biology and conservation as also identified thus economical opportunities that the species can offer to Azores, especially the ones related to the tourism of nature. For example, bird watching is increasing fast in Portugal, attracting Portuguese and foreigner people. To a country and region that face the tourism sector as a priority for their economic development, is extremely important to exploit in a balanced way the existing natural values.

Different public and private entities were present at the meeting, namely the Graciosa Natural Park, the Department of Oceanography and Fisheries of the University of the Azores / MARE, the MARE of the University of Coimbra, the Regional Directorate for Environment, the Regional Directorate for Sea Affairs, the Regional Directorate for Tourism and Transport, the Municipality of Santa Cruz da Graciosa, the Azores Tourism and SPEA.


Photo ©Tânia Pipa




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