Estrela Mountains

Country/territory: Portugal

IBA criteria met: C6 (2002)
For more information about IBA criteria, please click here

Area: 99,870 ha

Sociedade Portuguesa para o Estudo das Aves
IBA conservation status
Year of assessment (most recent) Threat (pressure) Condition (state) Action (response)
2005 low not assessed not assessed
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Site description (baseline)
The rough massif of Serra da Estrela is a high plateau NE-sloped and deeply crossed by the valleys of the rivers that born there. Mainly granitic with extensive areas of schist, the plateau presents rocky out-crops that define the landscape. Due to its great altitude, this is one of places with higher precipitations in Portugal. This also conditions a very marked vegetal zonation: a basal floor, up to 900 meters, with mediterranean influence, intensively cultivated; an intermediate floor, from 900 to 1600 meters, climatic domain of black oak (residual), with patches of coppices, genistas, heathers, brooms and rockroses, and artificial plantations of pines, pseudotsugas, cedars and firs; some rye-fields are also found; finally, the top floor, domain of heather and juniper groves, with some endemic rupicolous communities and orophytos nationaly only represented in Serra da Estrela. We can also find lacustrine communities of puddles and lagoons in higher zones.

Key biodiversity
This site has a important populations of some altitude species like Anthus campestris,Emberiza hortulana.The avifauna above 1000 m has a diversity of 100 species during the annual cycle.

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2023) Important Bird Area factsheet: Estrela Mountains. Downloaded from on 08/06/2023.