8 wolves culled at the Cabárceno Natural Park

December 11th, 2014 by Clive Muir

Lobos en el recinto de Cabárceno / Teresa Cobo

Lobos en el recinto de Cabárceno / Teresa Cobo

Interesting news that people are up in arms about the 8 wolves shot last month at the Cabárceno natural park/zoo…

It’s a difficult decision but if you can’t let the wolves out into the wild and the captive population is too big for it’s confines then it seems to me the only option is culling…

Full news in Spanish here…

Follow and join in on the topic over at the Iberianature Forum

Diclofenac NSAIDS and Spanish Vultures..

November 27th, 2014 by Clive Muir

Griffon Vulture

Griffon Vulture – Clive Muir – www.wildsideholidays.com

Back in 2008 on the Iberia Nature forum we started a topic about the use of Diclofenac in Asia and, as the drug was about to be used in Europe, it stayed in the Spain sections rather than going in the “other places” boards… And it seems with good reason. If you fancy trawling through the wealth of information about this subject then the main topic is here.

Apart from this amazing topic on the forum pretty much everything you need to know now about this disgusting drug proven to kill vultures in their millions can be found over at the Vulture foundation…. Loads of papers and up to date news…

As the deadline for a final decision by the EU Commission on banning veterinary diclofenac approaches, vultures really need you.

Veterinary diclofenac is extremely toxic to vultures, and has been banned from the Indian subcontinent after causing a 95-99% decline of several vulture species there. Incredibly, it has been approved for use on livestock in Italy and Spain.

The Vulture Conservation Foundation (VCF) has been leading a campaign, together with other organisations, to ban this drug in Europe too: given the existence of a non-toxic alternative (Meloxicam), common sense suggests a precautionary approach should be taken.

We had therefore asked the EU Commission to start a procedure for the withdrawal of an authorized veterinary medicinal drug which affects Community interests, Under Article 35 of Veterinary Medicines Directive (2001/82/EC). You can see more details about veterinary diclofenac, its impacts, and the whole campaign, here

http://www.4vultures.org/2014/11/25/vultures-need-you-please-write-to-your-meps-about-veterinary-diclofenac/

http://www.4vultures.org/our-work/campaigning-to-ban-diclofenac-in-europe/

Follow them on facebook as well
https://www.facebook.com/vultureconservationfoundation

The Caminito del Rey, El Chorro

November 26th, 2014 by Clive Muir

The new Caminito del Rey

The new Caminito del Rey

Interesting news coming from Malaga province of Andalucia with the Caminito del Rey or “Kings path” almost about to reopen. The Caminito is famous to climbers and adrenalin junkies the world over after the death defying video was loaded onto you tube in 2009.

The pathway was originally built over 100 years ago, pinned to the side of the Gaitanes gorge to get materials and to allow for inspections between the three Guadalhorce dams.

But now, with a total investment of around 11 million Euros, the broken and dangerous path has been restored and is due to open to the public in January 2015. Not without it’s polemics as local climbers (and worldwide) are complaining that their favorite European radical climbing site will be spoiled with the influx of thousands of us ordinary folk wanting to walk the new and safe path. Time will tell what happens but one thing is for sure, this tiny village of El Chorro needs to get ready for mass tourism fairly quickly.

Full informaation (in English) over at www.caminodelrey.es

Tablas de Damiel doomed?

November 26th, 2014 by Clive Muir

 

Tablas Daimiel - Coca Cola

Tablas Daimiel – Coca Cola

Well, it looks like the Tablas will be saved after all!, The mighty Coca Cola company are throwing their not inconsiderable weight behind the protection and future of these wetlands….

Do we think that Coca Cola can do a better job than 20 odd years of National Park status and hundreds of millions of funding already from EU, local and national levels?.. Time will tell but I find the whole idea really weird..

More from Coca Cola with the promo video in Spanish here.

UPDATE. It would seem a shadow of doubt has been cast on Coca Colas work at the Tablas de Daimiel…. Latest news on the forum from one of our members living and working there… It makes a good read that’s for sure.

Below is the news from 2009

The last chapter of the sad demise of the Tablas de Damiel, once one of Spain’s most important birding sites, makes depressing reading.  The underground fossil peat deposits had been on fire for several weeks. The lagoons have suffered over the years from the building of thousands of agricultural irrigation wells which have caused the water table to drop to the level of the peat, which was then  heated up over the summer and started to self-combust. El País

The Guardian  also reported on this story at the time.

Spanish wetlands shrouded in smoke as overfarming dries out peat. National park which was once a ‘paradise’ now on fire and churning out tonnes of CO2. They are meant to be Spain’s most important inland wetlands, but yesterday the lagoons at Las Tablas de Daimiel national park were not just dry, they were burning. Stilted walkways stood on baked earth and rowing boats lay stranded on the ground. Observation huts revealed no birds, just an endless stretch of reeds rooted in cracked mud.

And the iberianature forum is thundering. Here’s Clive on the topic “This will certainly be the first national park in Spain to be declassified due to a complete failure on the part of government, local authorities and local people…. And what next… Do we see Doñana go the same way in 10 years? What did they do with all the money…. The whole situation is a bad joke…. And what next? Once de classified it will be a fine place for a casino city maybe? Golf courses…. have to kick start the economy you know….”

See also: Environmental groups slate Las Tablas de Daimiel and Los Humedales de La Mancha

Eight Iberian Lynx reintroduced in Spain

July 3rd, 2014 by Clive Muir

lince Esperanza - HopeToday marks the beginning of the reintroduction of lynx in the central region of the Iberian Peninsula (Sierra Morena) by the  LIFE+Iberlince program. This area of Spain is considered to be one the historic distribution areas for this species and the release zone has been selected for future populations with a lot  habitat preparation work going on in the area for several years such as rabbit introduction and under road tunnels so that the animals can cross safely.

Hopefully, This initiative will allow the establishment of a new population, as well as allow connection with the close by reintroduction area of Guarrizas, which has already established itself as an area for lynx expansion and several stable and reproductively active individuals

The selection of the animals come from the breeding centres of Andalucia, Extremadura and Portugal with the need to ensure maximum genetic variability as well as sex ratio for the natural population.

Before being released, the lynx have had full veterinary health checks and photographic records of their flanks taken plus they are fitted with GPS collars.

There is a great live feed from the breeding centre in Acebuche (Doñana) here….

And please join in on the conversations over at the iberianature forum