The grasslands within the wider Sagres peninsula hold a markedly particular variety of breeding, passage and wintering birds. Some of these are scarce, or even unique in an Algarve context. The grasslands are dynamic, changing through the various stages of plowing for dry-land cereal cultivation, harvesting and subsequent fallow lands and sheep grazing. In the dry and warm parts of southern Europe, this type of non-intensive traditional land use produces a habitat type known as cereal steppe.
The species that depend on this traditional land use are under threat from abandonment, as are the people’s livelihoods that have depended on these practices for centuries. While visiting some of the most important grasslands to find some of the characteristic birds that inhabit these habitats at this time of year, we will discuss and exchange ideas about how it could be possible to return to a sustainable situation that benefits people and birdlife.
Participants need to bring their cars to the starting point of the field trip. The guide suggests to gather in small groups in order to use the lowest possible number of vehicles. Bring hiking boots, water, a small snack for the morning and birdwatching equipment.