25 years of work to recover traditional transhumance in Spain

On 21 September 2017, the Mesta association in Spain celebrated 25 years of work aiming to recover traditional transhumance along the canyons restoring the profession of shepherd, essential to a sustainable territory management.

Since then, some 60 herds have collaborated with the Mesta association, covering more than 90,000 km of cattle trails throughout Spain with about 350,000 sheep, goats, cows and horses. In addition to contributing to soil fertility and the biodiversity conservation, transhumance ensures connectivity between ecosystems, carbon in the grasslands and the fight against forest fires. Transhumance also supports social interrelations between the rural and urban world, spreading the importance of the ancient pastoral culture.

The revival of transhumance routes was supported by Dr Luc Hoffmann in its initial steps, then by MAVA Foundation. It remains at the heart of MAVA’s 2016-2022 strategy that seeks an amplification of the impressive work done in Spain to other Mediterranean countries where transhumance remains traditionally anchored.

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