The Andalusian Governing Council has approved plans for the recovery and conservation of five sets of animals and plants listed in the Andalusian Endangered Species Catalogue: wetland birds, ferns, fish and aquatic epicontinental invertebrates, flora and fauna of the high peaks, and flora and fauna of the dunes, beaches and coastal cliffs.
The guiding documents for the project include measures for population recovery, reducing threats, and protecting existing habitats and possible areas of expansion. The total number of species included in this new plan amounts to 133, of which 105 are of flora and 28 of fauna.
Along with environmental objectives, priorities include job creation in rural areas and improved management of natural resources in the areas of application. To this end, the project incorporates the model of public-private partnership led by the Ministry of Environment for the protection of endangered species which is currently used in 547 concrete and specific agreements with landowners and for implementation of projects in more than 223,000 hectares of land in the autonomous Andalusian region.
The first approved plan focuses on wetland birds: one species listed as vulnerable, the Osprey, and six endangered species: the Bittern, the Marbled Teal, the Ferruginous Duck , the White-headed Duck, the Moorish Coot and the Squacco Heron.
The geographic scope of the recovery plan for the conservation of these seven species of birds includes 114 wetlands covered by existing nature reserves which stretch over an area of more than 73,000 hectares, as well as other potential enclaves or habitats.
Andalusia has the richest and best preserved heritage of wetlands on the Iberian Peninsula, with areas of importance, such as the Bay of Cádiz, Seville and the South of Córdoba lagoon complex, the salt marshes of Cape Gata or the lagoon of Fuente de Piedra. Andalusian wetlands represent 56% of the floodplains in Spain. The Regional Ministry of Environment, Government of Andalusia, is an IUCN Member.
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