Botanists warn Portugal has lost 24 native species
Botanists compiling Portugal’s “red list” of threatened vascular plants have warned that it’s already too late for 24 species. Another 380 are at risk. The reasons include “pressures like water pollution, drainage and the invasion of exotic species” while “profound alterations in soil usage”, including the “expansion and intensification of agriculture” have also played their part.
Worst affected areas are the lower Alentejo, southwest coast and Algarve.
These regions have been particularly affected by “large scale orchards”, says the Portuguese Botanical Society, stopping short of the ‘demon word’ “monoculture” which agricultural authorities have been so quick to embrace, claiming that intensive farming “is the future”.
For botanists, intensive farming threatens more than half of continental Portugal’s vascular plant heritage, explains Expresso – stressing that the red list has not yet been fully completed.
For details on the country’s disappearing plant life, see http://listavermelha-flora.pt/flora-especies/ or follow the project on facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ListaVermelhaFloraPT/