Celebrating the fifth anniversary

6 July 2015

Yesterday was the birthday of our mascot Dona, born five years ago in Aranga, nearby the River Mandeo. And there was nothing better than celebrating it with her mate Gala, eating some of those doggy treats they like so much. It was a well-deserved award, because along all this time Dona accompanied us on the search for woodland plots, she stayed with the volunteers during the working days, guided children and adults along the River Mandeo and she was the protagonist of an album on the local nature.

Photograph of Dona and GalaHer anniversary reminds us that in 2010, on a day like this, Fragas do Mandeo was born. After this five-year period, we can look back and take stock of whether we stayed true to the initial objectives: to do land stewardship with the aim of preserving nature in the As Mariñas area.

Although we started off with a foundation endowment of two small land plots, today the protected area almost reaches 200,000 m2, half of them in ownership and the rest on long term tenure. Many of these plots are well preserved native woods. Others had eucalyptus; after eliminating them, we can now see how the deciduous woods are growing back, the landscape is improving and a habitat that provides shelter to many threatened species is recovering.

Our campaigns have not been limited only to those plots for which we acquired the rights that allow us to manage them. Although no land stewardship agreements have been signed in Galicia affecting water and maritime-terrestrial public domains, we do not wait for the Administration to approve such agreements in order to take action in rivers, marshlands and beaches of the area.

All this was made possible thanks to the modest donors and hardworking volunteers of Fragas do Mandeo who, through their economic contributions and personal determination, achieved its success. But also through the associations that give economic support and spread the word about our work; thanks to many people who helped in diverse ways and to the small companies that collaborated at different moments. To all of them, thank you so much!

If you are not among these pioneers, what are you waiting for to efficiently protect our natural areas?

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