Biosphere Reserves (BR) in Galicia

Introduction

BR TERRAS DO MIÑO:

Declared Biosphere Reserve in 2002. It is the second biggest in the Iberian Peninsula and the biggest in Galicia, occupying 39% of the province of Lugo with an area of 363.668,9 ha. It includes 26 local governments from the high basin of the Miño river, belonging, in turn, to seven regions: Ourol (Western A Mariña); Alfoz, O Valadouro and Mondoñedo (Central Mariña); Abadín, A Pastoriza, Begonte, Castro de Rei, Cospeito, Guitiriz, Muras, Vilalba and Xermade (Terra Chá); Meira, Pol and Riotorto (Meira); Castroverde, Friol, Guntín, Lugo, O Corgo, Outero de Rei and Rábade (Lugo); Baralla (Os Ancares), Láncara and O Páramo (Sarria).

BR ÁREA DE ALLARIZ:

It comprises the Ourense local governments of Allariz, Vilar de Santos, A Bola and Rairiz de Veiga. It was recognised in the year 2005 and it has won other awards and recognitions such as the European Award for Urban Public Space. UNESCO justifies the choice of considering it seeing that it is a Galician area particularly important for its cultural values and for the sustainable use of the land, attending to the preservation of the flora and fauna.

BR OS ANCARES LUCENSES, MONTES DE NAVIA, CERVANTES Y BECERREÁ:

Declared Biosphere Reserve in 2006. It comprises the hills of Cervantes, Navia and Becerreá. With an extension in the area of Lugo of 53.600 ha, it occupies an area of 6% of the province. Having a border with Leon, it is the biggest natural space of the Galician Autonomous Community consisting of small valleys canalized among peaks of more than 2,000 metres of altitude. It is a very interesting natural setting where, besides its flora and fauna, we can admire its prehistoric settlements and pallozas.

BR RIO EO, OSCOS AND TERRAS DE BURÓN:

It was awarded by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) in 2007, in Paris. This is the first Biosphere Reserve that is shared by two Autonomous Communities in Spain: Asturias and Galicia. Lugo's area consists of 108.007 ha, 11% of the province, being in its totality 158.883 ha. It is comprised of 14 local governments, seven in the province of Lugo (Ribadeo, Trabada, A Pontenova, Ribeira de Piquín, Baleira, A Fonsagrada and Nogueira de Muñiz) and seven in the province of Asturias (Castropol, Vegadeo, San Tirso de Abres, Taramundi, Villanueva de Oscos, Santa Eulalia de Oscos and San Martín de Oscos).

BR TRANSFRONTERIZA GERÊS-XURÉS:

Fifth biosphere reserve in Galicia, declared by UNESCO in 2009. From an ecological point of view, the cross-border region of Xurés-Gerês stands out, according to UNESCO, for the “variety of its forest and peat bog ecosystems, as well as by the considerable number of endemic species which have been developed under the joint influence of the oceanic and Mediterranean climates”. It consists of ten entire local governments, six in Galicia: Baixa Limia (Lower Limia: Lobios, Lobeira, Entrimo, Muiños, Calvos de Randín, and Bande) and another five in Portugal (Melgaço, Arcos de Valdeve, Ponte da Barca, Terra de Bouro and Montalegre).

BR MARIÑAS CORUÑESAS AND TERRAS DO MANDEO:

Sixth biosphere reserve in Galicia, declared by UNESCO in 2013. It includes a total of 113.970 ha, which represents 14.33% of the area of the province of A Coruña, shared by 18 councils. With this area, it is the second Galician biosphere reserve in order of space, being the first of the province of A Coruña. The governments that comprise this territory are: Aranga, Abegondo, Arteixo, Bergondo, Betanzos, Cambre, Carral, Cesuras, Coirós, Culleredo, Curtis, Irixoa, Miño, Oleiros, Oza dos Ríos, Paderne, Sada and Sobrado.