Protecting paradise: Torrevieja’s battle to safeguard the Snowy Plover

Protecting paradise: Torrevieja's battle to safeguard the Snowy Plover.

Protecting paradise: Torrevieja's battle to safeguard the Snowy Plover. Image: Ayuntamiento de Torrevieja.

Torrevieja City Council has launched its annual campaign to protect the snowy plover, one of Spain’s most endangered bird species.

These birds mainly nest in the Natural Park of the La Mata and Torrevieja lagoons, as well as in the dune system of the “Molino del Agua” Municipal Natural Park on La Mata beach.

The primary threats to nesting snowy plovers in the dune system are loose dogs and overcrowding by people.

To address this, the council sets up wooden and rope fences each year to create a designated area for the birds while allowing beach access elsewhere.

However, if loose dogs breach the fence or roam freely on the beach, the birds cannot establish their nests.

Conservation efforts for endangered wildlife in urban areas, like La Mata Beach, are challenging but essential. While past efforts have been successful, resident cooperation is crucial.

Beachgoers must avoid encroaching on fenced areas and limit the presence of dogs, keeping them leashed and close to the shore.

Torrevieja’s experience in managing snowy plover nesting events has led to effective procedures and strategies that could be applied to similar coastal areas in the Valencian Community.

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Written by

Anna Ellis

Originally from Derbyshire, Anna has lived in the middle of nowhere on the Costa Blanca for 19 years. She is passionate about her animal family including four dogs and four horses, musicals and cooking.