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First Rewilding seminar held in Spain

On December 14, the last day of the successful Madrid Wild Wonders exhibition, Spain’s first ever Rewilding seminar was held at the Cañada Real Wildlife Park in El Escorial outside Madrid, under the headline “Making Iberia a Wilder Place”. The theme all through the day was how to turn present problems into opportunities for people and for nature.

More than 50 people, mainly decision makers from public nature conservation agencies, corporate and scientific institutions, NGOs and media attended the seminar, which was hosted by Fundación José Maria Blanc and organised by Rewilding Europe together with our partners Fundación Naturaleza y Hombre, Fundación Felíx Rodríguez de la Fuente and the Associação Transumância e Natureza.

Among the speakers were Vance Martin from the WILD Foundation, journalist Benigno Varillas from the Fundación Felíx Rodríguez de la Fuente, Director Miguel Angel Simón from the LIFE Iberian lynx project, Professor Henrique Pereira from the Universidad de Lisboa, Ronald Goderie from the Taurus Foundation, Carlos Sánchez from the Fundación Naturaleza y Hombre and IUCN Spain, António Monteiro from Associação Transumância e Natureza and Frans Schepers, Neil Birnie, Deli Saavedra and Staffan Widstrand from Rewilding Europe.

Subjects covered were: Wildlife comeback in Spain, rewilding as a fire prevention option, the comeback of the Iberian lynx, non-intervention management, wildlife watching worldwide and in Europe, the business case for rewilding, the WILD 10 World Wilderness Congress coming to Salamanca in 2013, the Tauros project and reports from the Western Iberian rewilding areas Campanarios de Azaba and Faia Brava.

Download the program in Spanish and in English.

Download the media release in Spanish.

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  • Travel Club
Casa da Cisterna: expanding the business thanks to rewilding

Casa da Cisterna, a boutique bed & breakfast in the Western Iberia rewilding area was the first beneficiary of Rewilding Europe Capital (REC). Ana Berliner and António Monteiro, owners and managers of this fantastic Bed & Breakfast had the chance to expand their project thanks to the REC loan in 2014.

The Bed & Breakfast, located in the historic village of Castelo Rodrigo, one of the most well preserved rural villages in the region, opened to the public in 2004 with four bedrooms. Ten years later, due to great demand, Ana and António decided to expand the Bed & Breakfast and renovated a neighbouring house. Now they offer five more bedrooms than before, where tradition, elegant design and modern functionality come together beautifully, to provide guests with a unique experience.

“With the support of the Rewilding Europe Capital we could attain the co-finance needed for the expansion of Casa da Cisterna,” says Ana Berliner. “Besides infra-structure, it enables us to increase our energy efficiency.” Casa da Cisterna now has an ecological heating system – a heating pump – and solar panels for heating water, reducing the electricity consumption.

“In 2014, the occupation rate of visitors from Central Europe increased 35%,” Ana says. “Some visitors also came through the Rewilding Europe Travel Club. Rewilding Europe, with their different approaches – from funding to promotion – are great partners, supporting the growth of our business.”