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Mourão/Moura/Barrancos SPA
Mourão/Moura/Barrancos Special Protection Area
The Mourão/Moura/Barrancos SPA has 84.909 hectares that comprehend territory from the municipalities of Barrancos (21%), Moura (59%), Mourão (20%) and Serpa (1%). Part of this SPA overlaps with the Moura/Barrancos pSCI (proposed Site of Community Interest) (47%).

The landscape is rather heterogeneous being composed by wide areas of farming and forest, valleys of the Guadiana River affluents, including a part of the Alqueva dam.  The farming includes areas with pastures, cereal crops, olive plantations and vineyards. The forest areas are well represented in the SPA and are predominantly composed by more or less sparse holm oak and cork oak groves.

As for biodiversity, the Mourão/Moura/Barrancos SPA is very important for the conservation of steppe birds as well as for many species of birds of prey, such as the Black Vulture (Aegypius monachus), the Golden Eagle (Aquila chrysaetus), the Spanish Imperial Eagle (Aquila adalberti) and the Bonelli’s Eagle (Aquila fasciata). This is the most important overwintering area of the Crane (Grus grus) in Portugal (ICNB2006). It is also one of the priority areas for the conservation of the Iberian lynx (Linx pardinus) in Portugal and it comprehends the second most important area of the country for endangered bat species.

As for steppe birds, this SPA is an important overwintering area for the Great Bustard (Otis tarda) and it holds the second larger national breeding population of Little Bustard (Tetrax tetrax). The Lesser Kestrel (Falco naumanni) has recently disappeared from this area, mostly due to the loss of natural nesting sites, but also due to habitat and feeding changes. However, the existence of favourable habitat for the feeding of the specie justifies the importance of providing conditions for its return, mainly by improving the breeding habitat or, in other words, by providing nesting sites.