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THE COMARCA OF MIAJADAS ‐ TRUJILLO YOUR BIRDING BASE IN THE HEART OF EXTREMADURA Birding Conservation Accommodation Conferences Sustainable Development An Information Pack on accommodation and other services in the district of Miajadas‐Trujillo in Extremadura for the bird tourism sector 2 REASONS TO GO BIRDING IN EXTREMADURA.... UNIQUE LANDSCAPES Marvel at landscapes that have remained unchanged for generations, thanks to traditional extensive land-use practices: the seemingly endless cork and holm oak savannah (”dehesa”) and the rolling steppes. SURVIVING WILDERNESS Visit one of the last wilderness areas in Western Europe, where rocky ravines and mountains provide a backdrop to steppe and savannah, all incredibly rich in wildlife. 41 Importnt Bird Areas occupy no less than 74% of the region´s area (the highest proportion of anywhere in Europe). STRONGHOLD FOR RAPTORS Be thrilled by so many raptors, in an area that hosts internationally important populations and boats over 20 breeding species, including the largest global concentrations of Black Vulture and is a stronghold for the Spanish Imperial Eagle. THE COMARCA OF MIAJADAS AND TRUJILLO 3 REASONS TO GO BIRDING IN EXTREMADURA.... AMAZING DIVERSITY See, even in just a few days, one of the finest and most comprehensive selections of Mediterranean Birds, including steppe, woodland, scrub and wetland species, as well as alpine and northern species in the mountains. B R E A T H T A K I N G SPECTACLES Enjoy the sight of displaying Great Bustards in spring, nesting Black Stork, squadrons of Griffon Vultures and wheeling flocks of Lesser Krestel. Birders in the winter will be treated with huge concentrations of common Crane, representing no less than 75% of the European population. SUPPORTING SUSTAINABLE RURAL DEVELOPMENT Stay in one of the network of rural lodgings (”casas rurales”) or small rural hotels wich provide a lifeline to the local village economies, so important to maintain the viability of small communities and traditional livelihoods. THE COMARCA OF MIAJADAS AND TRUJILLO 4 REASONS TO GO BIRDING IN EXTREMADURA.... EXCELLENT INFORMATION AND ACCESS Use the excellent reference books available and help from local guides to ensure that you make best use of your time. Reach the heart of Extremadura in just two and half hours down the motorway from Madrid airport, with good road access to all of the key birding areas. BEAUTIFUL HISTORIC TOWNS E n j o y t h e R o m a n architecture, castles, medieval town squares, the superbly conserved building that track the fascinanting history of the bithplace of the Conquistadores, built from the same granite that has created such a rugged landscape. A STRONG LOCAL COMMITMENT TO CONSERVATION Support, by your presence, the local commitment to conservation and the futher development of bird tourism in the area. This is a visible expression of the value of Extremadura´s natural resources. THE COMARCA OF MIAJADAS AND TRUJILLO 5 YOUR BASE IN THE HEART OF EXTREMADURA Just two and a half hours drive from Madrid airport, you reach the heart of Extremadura and excellent base for your birding holiday. The beautiful small town of Trujillo lies in the centre of this area, with the historic treasures of Cáceres, Mérida and Guadalupe all close by. The most popular time to visit is spring (late March to late May) with almost all summer migrants arriving before mid-April. The climate is excellent for birding and the landscape wonderful with its flowers. However, good birding can be had almost all of the year round. The winter, in praticular, offers tremendous opportunities for biding. There are large concentrations of Common Crane, flocks of Great Bustard, Little Bustards, as well as both sandgrouse. Eagles take advantage of fine late winter days for aerial displays. On the wetlands there are numbers of wintering duck and waders, whilst species like Black-winged Kite are much easier to see then. The summer is the best time to see White-rumped Swift, as well as obliging juvenile Great Spotted Cuckoos prior to their migration at the end of July. THE COMARCA OF MIAJADAS AND TRUJILLO 6 EXTREMADURA.... Extremadura, the wildest, least developed and poorest region of Spain, borders on Portugal. A hard climate, with extreme temperatures both in winter and summer, and a poor soil, has until very recently kept agricultural development at a low ebb and the farming population impoverished. It was from Extremadura that men like Hernando Cortés and Francisco Pizarro set out to make their fortune, or die in the attempt, in a far-off New World that must then have seemed as distant as the moon. When the Conquistadors finally returned to the towns and villages of their birth, covered in blood, glory and gold, they built sumptuous palaces and endowed churches and monasteries with riches, a legacy which is still visible today in the historic and attractive old buildings that are a feature of the region. This indeed is a part of Spain far from the Mediterranean coast with its concrete beach resorts, an area where the proud, traditional Spanish way of life continues with only limited outside influences. Nowadays the lonely plains and hills of Extremadura provide a last great refuge for some of Europe's most spectacular birds. In recent years its wide open expanses have become famous for their remarkable populations of both Great and Little Bustards, species which have declined drastically over most of their range and which are now very hard to find elsewhere in Western Europe. THE COMARCA OF MIAJADAS AND TRUJILLO 7 EXTREMADURA.... The arid plains are not just superb for bustards, but also provide a home for Pin-tailed and Black-bellied Sandgrouse, Stone-curlews and numerous larks. This is also undoubtedly the best place in Western Europe for raptors, and the density is truly impressive. The star attraction is of course the Spanish Eagle, formerly treated as a subspecies of the Imperial Eagle, but now usually considered as a full species in its own right. Globally threatened, the Spanish Eagle is, for all intents and purposes, endemic to Spain, where the population is slowly recovering from near-extinction in the 1960s and 1970s. All the other eagles found in Western Europe occur here as well and vultures are still quite common; in particular we can expect to see good numbers of the huge Eurasian Black Vulture. In addition, small numbers of Black-shouldered Kites have colonized the region. As well as bustards, sandgrouse and raptors, Extremadura holds a number of other specialities including Red-necked Nightjar, Thekla Lark, Black Wheatear and the delightful Iberian Azure-winged Magpie (a species now recognized as specifically distinct from its cousins in northeast Asia). As well as these specialities, Extremadura supports a great wealth of more widespread European species, including prehistoric-looking Black Storks and colourful Great Spotted Cuckoos, European Bee-eaters, European Rollers and Eurasian Golden Orioles. THE COMARCA OF MIAJADAS AND TRUJILLO 8 YOUR BASE… IN EXTREMADURA A network of rural lodgings “Casas Rurales” and small country hotels “Hoteles Rurales” exist and they provide ideal accommodation for those visitors looking for charm, character and a special friendly environment. The following pages give details of establishments are all close to the best birding areas and cater especially for visiting birdwatchers. Further information can be obtained by visiting their respective websites. Opening Spring 2005, this family house is run for birders by an active birder, Martin and his wife Claudia. The two-hundred year old house is set in a hectare of garden and olive groves at the edge of a small village and has six double bedrooms with en-suite bathrooms, as well as a library. Meals are taken in a beautiful old wine cellar. It lies in easy reach of all the prime birdwatching areas, as well as enjoying good birding in the garden and immediate surroundings. Up-to-date local birding information is available from the host, as well as guiding services if required. This homely setting is an excellent place for independient visitors or small groups to stay. Address: Lagar El Recuerdo, Pago San Clemente, 10200 Trujillo Cáceres. Extremadura. Spain Mobile: +34 609684719 (Martin)+34 609844631 (Claudia). Tel: +34 927319349; E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org www.birdingextremadura.com; www.casaruralelrecuerdo.comTHE COMARCA OF MIAJADAS AND TRUJILLO 9 Knowing the passion that birdwatchers have for birds and their requirements, Javier and Marisol have built and equipped, close to Monfragüe Natural Park, accommodation specifically for birdwatching in Extremadura. It is designed to offer birdwatchers rest after long days in the field, to enjoy local traditional meals and the means to meet all of their information needs (library, video, internet, maps). “El Tenado Country Cottage” has six en-suite bedrooms and is the ideal base for birdwatching in Extremadura. Address: Hernán Cortés, 10, E-10291, Aldea del Obispo. Cáceres. Extremadura. Spain Mobile: +34 679475955 (Javier)+34679475956 (Marisol). Tel/Fax: +34 927311677; E-mail: email@example.com; www.eltenado.com This country inn, run by Henri, is centrally located in Extremadura to explore the region´s magnificent variety of birds, unspoilt landscape and mediaval towns. It lies just 14 km from Trujillo on the road toward Guadalupe. Uk´s reputed bird-guides guarantee a daily average of 85 species according to our five year experience. Finca Santa Marta is converted from two farms which produced olive oil and wine, has 14 en-suite bedrooms, with meals served in the ancient olive oil mill with its 19th century hand-driven olive press. Finca Santa Marta is a popular and well established, long-standing base for bird tours, as well as those travelling independently... Address: Finca Santa Marta, Pago San Clemente, 10200 Trujillo Cáceres. Extremadura. Spain Tel: +34 927319203; Fax: +34 927334115; Mobile: +34 658914355 (Henri)THE COE-mail: h MARCA Oenri@facilnet F.es MI ww AJADAw.fincasan Sta AND marta.c To Rm UJILLO 10 Francisco is the owner of this seven bedroom house and a birdwatcher himself. “Las Canteras” has en-suite double bedrooms and central heating. Meals are taken in the huge porch, which not only has impressive views of Trujillo, but also a wonderful panorama of the steppes. Guests can watch, whilst at breakfast, a thriving White Stork colony just few metres away, as well as birds like Great Bustard, Montagu´s Harriers, Griffon Vultures, Black Vultures, Black stork and Rollers, whilst a night traditional local cuisine will enjoyed. This working country estate is set in the Plains of Trujillo and not very far away from the famous Montfragüe Natural Park. Address: Finca “Las Canteras”, Monroy Road, Km 6 Trujillo. Cáceres. Extremadura. SpainMobile: +34 609861315 (Francisco). E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org; Web: www.casarural.net Juan Pedro and Belén run this attractive Rural Hotel located in the Sierra of the Lagares, 10 kms from Trujillo. It is a carefully restored small stately home with a warm, conforrtable atmosphere. Their main goal is to make guests feel at home and enjoy their stay to the full. It has got 8 double bedrooms with full-equipped bathrooms, air conditioning, telephone, TV and minibar. There are spectacularly beautiful views of the sierra of the Villuercas and the Trujillo Plains together, with the historic town of Trujillo as centrepiece. With the proximity of the Monfragüe Natural Park and other sites, there is a Address: Ctra EX-208, Km 87,6, 10200 Trujillo Cáceres. Extremadura. Spain THE COTel: +MARCA O34 927319350; Fa Fx: MI +34 AJADA92731S9355; AND Mobile: T + R34 UJ6ILLO 35604949 (Juan