The Southern Iberian Chain: restoring one of Spain’s most iconic landscapes

Project Context and Aim

A major mountain range, the 500 km-long Iberian Chain boasts diverse, dramatic landscapes and rich biodiversity including Egyptian vulture and Iberian ibex. As a result of land abandonment, it also has one of Europe’s lowest human population densities. Focusing on two Natura 2000 sites covering 180,000 ha in the southern section of the Iberian Chain, this project will draw up plans to explore the huge potential for landscape-scale restoration. This could transform challenges posed by land abandonment into opportunities for reinstating natural grazing and protecting a network of old-growth forests.

The project envisages that wildlife comeback – perhaps even the return of lost predators such as Iberian wolf and Iberian lynx – may increase nature-based tourism. The project’s vision is that this would revitalise local economies and counter the risk of destructive land uses such as mining and intensive forestry.

Project Partners

Rewilding Europe
Fundación Internacional para la Restauración de Ecosistemas (FIRE)
Terra Naturalis
Asociación Micorriza

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