YOU AND ME, WHAT DO WE HAVE TO DO?
Montis is the manager of an area with 100 hectares, belonging to the common land of Carvalhais, União das Freguesias de Carvalhais e Candal, S. Pedro do Sul. With this campaign, we intend to increase the resources for the sustainable management of the property.
We aim to intervene strategically in the property, restoring it and increasing the refuge areas for wildlife, especially the roe deer that is being reintroduced in the region as one of the main preys of the wolf.
Our priority is to work on the lower areas of the property, which are more favourable to the accumulation of soil and moisture, in order to accelerate the recovery of vegetation along the water lines. This will bring forward the growth of small woodlands and bushes that provide good shelter for the roe deer and other wildlife in a continuous way, like a circulatory system that will benefit the entire property.
Complementarily, we will create “edible forests” with plant species that guarantee more food to a greater diversity of birds.
All financial resources obtained through this crowdfunding campaign will be used in management actions implemented by people who want to take in their hands the opportunity to manage nature in a non-professional way.
Montis has also submitted applications to other funding sources, such as the PDR 2020 or ACHLI (Association for the Conservation of Iberian Wolf Habitat) support management programme, to accomplish all tasks that cannot be performed through volunteer work, such as controlled fire or rotational grazing.
Our purpose is that professional management actions and volunteering activities complement each other to obtain faster and more consistent results. Double funding for the same actions will be entirely avoided.
The main actions to be financed through this campaign (obviously excluded from the above mentioned applications to funds) are the following:
– Use of natural engineering techniques, such as the construction of small dams for the accumulation of sediments and installation of living hedges;
– Planting of “edible forests” (with species like junipers, strawberry trees, European yews, hawthorns, Portugal laurels, mastic trees).
The management model we have chosen, combining professional management and the involvement of common people in the management of natural areas, will give more solid roots to the project, creating sustainability in the medium and long term and launching the basis for a program that will involve Montis members in the management of natural heritage through the following years.
Crowdfunding will provide the resources to perform various management actions over one year, some more recreational, some more geared to education and training: volunteer weekends, corporate team building, natural engineering workshops, a international work camp, for example. Our goal is to ensure approximately 291 days of work on the property, that is, more than one employee equivalent.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
MONTIS – Nature Conservation Association is an NGO and non-profit organization whose main objective is to manage territories, with relevance for the conservation of natural values. It was created in March 23, 2014 and it is based in Vouzela, Viseu.
We have at present nearly 350 members, in Portugal and abroad, and we work to ensure the development of natural processes, promoting the conservation of native species and the smart management of wildfires and other natural risks. It is our aim to increase the market value of biodiversity.
Montis has started its activities in the mountains surrounding the rivers Vouga and Paiva (Freita, Arada, Lapa e Caramulo mountains), where the association manages presently around 155 ha, but intends to extend its activity in other areas of Portugal.
Every month we organize a walk for our members and a day dedicated to volunteer work in our properties. We also organize locally 2 seminars per year, on subjects pertaining to conservation and biodiversity.