Mallorcan birds and orchids threatened by golf course plan


Part 2 is here.

Part 3, about the park’s biodiversity, is here. The Catalan langue version is here.

Part 4 is here.

About the island, often spelled ‘Majorca‘ in English.

From Birdwatch:

Mallorcan wildlife site under threat

[Monday 5 November 2007]

An important Mallorcan site for birds, orchids and other wildlife will be lost to a golf course development unless urgent action is taken, according to the Grup Ornitologic de les Balears (GOB) in Mallorca.

Son Bosc is an area of high biodiversity situated just outside the S’Albufera de Mallorca Natural Park. To birders it is known as an easily accessible European Bee-eater colony, as it has the best banks in Mallorca where they can make their traditional nesting burrows. The area is also rich in large flying insects which provide them with plenty of food.

In late spring and early summer the area attracts a flock of up to 100 Eleonora’s Falcons, which gather there to feed in the evenings. Again it is the large insects, especially beetles, which attract them there.

But it is the rare orchids which are most valuable, as Son Bosc is the main site for the Robust Orchid, holding more than two-thirds of the European population in 2007 (900 plants out of 1300). This species is only found on Mallorca, and two sites in Morocco and Algeria. Also found at the Son Bosc are thousands of Tongue, Bug and Bee Orchids.

The dune grassland habitat is the key to the area’s riches which also include and endemic moths and two species of hoverflies which may be new to science.

Once part of the Natural Park, the Son Bosc area was removed from the protection that the Park gave it in 2003, leaving it vulnerable to development.

A company has now put forward a proposal to build a golf course on the site and to date all attempts at the Balearic level have failed to persuade the authorities to act in favour of protecting the orchid. The development company has approached the Municipal Council of Muro (in whose jurisdiction the land falls) requesting a licence to go ahead with the development. If the Municipal Council grants the licence, the only way the golf course development can be stopped is by persuading the Balearic government to intervene. This appears unlikely unless pressure is applied at the international level.

Local naturalists have been monitoring the site to determine its value and together with GOB Mallorca they are getting international support. A webpage has been set up from which letters of protest can be individually emailed. If you would like to help save this unique area, then go to: here.

The Balearic islands are to freeze all construction along the most delicate parts of coastlines and around the islands’ capitals, which have been blighted by property developments since mass tourism first arrived in Spain in the 60s: here.

Threat to Los Monegeros in Spain: here.

3 thoughts on “Mallorcan birds and orchids threatened by golf course plan

  1. Pingback: Save Mallorca wetland from money grabbers | Dear Kitty. Some blog

  2. Pingback: Rare orchids found in South Africa | Dear Kitty. Some blog

  3. Pingback: Criminal turtle farm discovered in Mallorca, Spain | Dear Kitty. Some blog

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