Main Problems

Azorina vidalii populations are mostly threatened due to habitat degradation caused by human disturbances, which includes invasion by Invasive Alien Flora, changes in hydraulic condition, and recreational activities. LIFE VIDALIA focuses on population reinforcements and habitat improvement, which includes the control or mitigation of Invasive Alien Species, as this is one of the major threats observed.

Lotus azoricus is mostly affected by habitat shifting and alteration, reduction in dispersal due to isolation, damage by herbivores, and invasion of non-native species. Because of that, the Project focuses especially on population reinforcements, in order to improve viability, and habitat restoration. Of course, these works comprise the control and mitigation of invasive alien fauna and flora not only by actively controlling species but also by setting up fences to mitigate herbivory by rodents. Rodent control is necessary since the project team has directly observed impacts from rodents on Azorina vidalii’s leaves and seeds, and other species of Lotus from Macaronesia are known to be predated by rodents.

Awareness raising and behavioral change actions are expected to contribute for the conservation of these species and promote volunteer work targeting them directly. Besides, given the impact recreational activities are also inducing over the Azorina vidalii populations, a set of communication actions will target behavioral change to the public.

Altogether, we expect the project actions to provide a substantial increment in the number of individuals and nuclei, and achieve the main goal reaching a Favorable conservation status on the target islands before the project ends.