Improving connectivity of Dupont’s lark populations
- General information
In the Señorio de Molina moorlands (Guadalajara, Spain) we work in the conservation and improvement of agricultural biodiversity. Several wind farms are located in these moors and to mitigate the impacts of these infrastructures we propose innovative measures for the conservation of these unique habitats, devoid of trees, where woody shrubs (Genista rigidissima) formations dominate together with other species typical of a traditional livestock management, such as thyme and psychroxerophilic grasslands.
Our approach is based on agrarian stewardship to promote the replacement of cereal crops by organic crops (lavandin) to benefit the Dupont’s Lark (Chersophilus duponti), a steppe bird threatened by changes in land uses, livestock abandonment, and loss of natural habitats. The habitat of Dupont’s Lark is restricted by the topography and the structure of the vegetation.
We develop this pilot measure with Naturgy, Enel Green Power, the regional government of Castilla La Mancha in Guadalajara and the consultancy Biodiversity Node: the organic crop of lavandin (Lavandula x hybrida), and good agricultural practices - beyond the organic production - such as sheep grazing to control weed flora and to fertilize the crop. The greatest conservation threat of the Dupont’s Lark is coming from the changes in how we utilise land, since the abandonment of livestock uses are associated with the loss of the steppe habitat, on which this species is absolutely dependent. In addition, we carry out censuses of birds, soil invertebrates, a Geographic Information System and social indicators, which allow measuring and aassessing, in order to demonstrate effectiveness, and to extend the crops to other lands with the collaboration of interested farmers.
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