EDGE Community

Project information

[Project name/title]
Conservation of the Mediterranean monk seal

[Project description/overview]

Madeira, Portugal

Project type:

Relevant EDGE species:
Mediterranean Monk Seal (Monachus monachus)

Project members:
Rosa Pires

Relevant species
22. Mediterranean Monk Seal (Monachus monachus) CR

Revered by the ancient Greeks, this shy seal is today one of the world's most threatened marine mammals.

[Relevance description]
Conservation of the last remaining populations of mediterranean monk seals
Project summary
In 1988, when the population at Madeira archipelago was estimated in 6-8 seals and restricted to Desertas Islands, the Parque Natural da Madeira Service began a program to protect the species following three main orientations: 1. The effective protection of the species and its habitat. In 1990 the Nature Reserve of Desertas was created that has permanent frequent patrols since its creation. More recently a small rehabilitation centre was built. 2. Monitoring and study using non invasive methods 3. Public awareness and outreach. The results of this continuous program are: Positive population trend, now estimated to be 25 - 35 individuals; Annual births increased from 1 to 3; Since 1997, seals began to use open beaches showing that they are reacquiring original habits and; The distribution area of the species expanded to Madeira.
Project members
Ms Rosa Pires : Project co-ordinator

Rosa is a conservationist working to conserve the Mediterranean Monk Seal

[Member role description]
[Title:] Activities
[Image caption]
Surveying for seals
[Title:] Activities
[Image caption]
Mediterranean monk seal (Monachus monachus)