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Portugal contains a wealth of unique ecosystems, including extensive cork oak forests and maquis shrublands. These areas represent important reservoirs for biodiversity in Europe, including many birds of prey.
The habitats also play a vital role in supporting local culture and traditional lifestyles. For example, communities have harvested cork from the cork oak habitat for hundreds of years. Diverse habitats are also beneficial in the production of products such as honey, local cured meats and cheeses.
The country’s wildlife is suffering from serious rates of habitat loss. Industrial agriculture such as citrus plantations threaten the species that rely on montado and other unique ecosystems.
Fauna & Flora International (FFI) works in Portugal in partnership with Liga Para a Protecção Da Natureza (LPN), one of Portugal’s leading conservation organisations. We are closely involved with conservation of the world’s most endangered cat the Iberian lynx. The cat is a flagship species for stewardship of biodiversity in the region.
The Iberian lynx is the world’s most threatened cat species, due to a catastrophic combination of habitat loss, decline in prey and incidental and intentional killings. By working with Portuguese organisation Liga para a Protecção da Natureza, FFI is engaging with state and private landowners to ensure the creation and management of a continuous cross-border corridor of habitat to link fragmented lynx populations across the Iberian Peninsula.