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Our Mission
SPEA is an Environmental not-for-profit organization whose mission is to support research and conservation of wild birds and their habitats, by promoting sustainable development for the benefit of future generations.
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Context


The Lands of Priolo give home to the rare Azores Bullfinch (Pyrrhula murina), or Priolo as it is called locally. This bird's population was until recently in the edge of extinction with a population around 400-500. The main threat to its survival is the proliferation of invasive alien species that reduce the availability of food and quality of its habitat, the Azorean Laurel Forest

Some projects have taken place in the territory, along the last ten years, allowing the recovery of more than 300 hectares of priority habitats (Laurel Forest and Peatlands) and to increase the population of this bird up to around 775 birds. However, some areas were never subjected to recovery actions due to difficulties of access or high sensitivity of the areas, that is the case of waterlines and cliffs.

The LIFE+ Lands of Priolo project aims to establish methodologies for the recovery of those areas, as well as to establish new restored areas that allow to improve connectivity of the suitable areas for the Azores Bullfinch. This project also aims to analyse the importance of other possible threats, such as predators (rats and weasels), the presence of hybrids among laurel forest trees and the appearance of new invasive species. 

In addition, this project will focus in promoting coexistence between the Azores Bullfinch and local population through an intensive environmental education and awareness program, not only for school public but also to local population and visitors to the area, and through promotion of sustainable tourism in the territory and development of partnerships with touristic companies that are willing to contribute to long term conservation of the area.




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