ENPLC member Rewilding Portugal releases famous and rare Sorraia horses into the wild.
On 23 April, Rewilding Portugal invites local supporters and friends of the organisation to Ermo das Águias, the Rewilding Portugal nature reserve near Vale de Madeira.
Pedro Prata, Rewilding Portugal’s team leader, explains to ENPLC:
“The Sorraia horses are indigenous to the Iberian peninsula, natively coming from the area between the river Sor and the Raia region. Traditionally, they belonged to the wider wild fauna of Southern Iberia but almost went extinct. We have good experiences with large grazers that manage the vegetation’s growth, shaping the landscape and thus fostering biodiversity.”
The Sorraia horses are endangered. And it was only a short time ago when the last efforts were made to rescue the breed.
Prata explains: “With our rewilding strategy, we not only want to bring back wildlife to Portugal. We also want to stabilise the population of endangered species – like the Sorraia horses.”
The horses are released to the wild at noon, witnessed by a crowd of rewilding experts, local supporters, and wildlife enthusiasts. A community gathering at the Vale de Madeira Rewilding Centre with local food and beverages rounded out the event.
Rewilding Portugal is a private non-profit organisation established in January 2019 in Guarda. Its mission is to promote nature conservation through rewilding measures in Portugal.