New species discovered and more people involved – Leiria region


“Knowing how to protect” is the motto of the Aves da Batalha group, born in 2018, from a Facebook page. In order to get to know the fauna and flora of the town, the population was challenged to discover new species and to strengthen their link with nature.

Almost at the end of 2020, the targets remained despite the fact that, due to the pandemic, some activities were redesigned. In a statement sent to REGIÃO DE LEIRIA, group officials said “the pandemic has not reduced the quality of the work of this giant group of citizens”.

Equipped with binoculars, the members of the group made some observations in the street Photos: Aves da Batalha Group

In the months when the traffic rules were less restrictive, the group managed to organize six trips to discover the natural values ​​in Reguengo do Fetal, São Mamede, Mata do Cerejal in Alcanadas and Vale do Lena. The activities took place with a limited number of participants, in compliance with public health rules.

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At the time when people were asked to stay at home, Aves da Batalha launched several challenges on digital platforms, namely “To Descoberta da Batalha”. The initiative took place in May and November and was a “quick census” for a week.

Citizens were invited to discover nature around their homes, in the yard, garden or even in the yard and to record the species observed on the iNaturalist platform. The challenge resulted in nearly 500 records of 250 species, some new to the county.

In 2020, there was still time for the monitoring of some birds and five new species were added to the list of the municipality, which numbered 134. Among them, the leaders of the group highlight the golden eagle, the owl and the owl of ears.

A robin, a kestrel and an eagle owl photographed by Frederico Conceição

Reports, the group reached a total of 130 participants in all activities carried out this year. For João Tomás, one of the managers, “proximity is essential to keep people attached to the project”. A “simple” photograph of the county’s natural wealth helps to arouse curiosity.
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