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Location Portugal, Centro
Central coordinates 7o 4.00' West  40o 53.00' North
IBA criteria B2, C6
Area 23,727 ha
Altitude 130 - 652m
Year of IBA assessment 2002

Sociedade Portuguesa para o Estudo das Aves

Site description This site, located in the region of Beira Alta, includes a part of the Côa Valley, a steep valley with cliffs and rock formation of granites and schists.The vegetation is scrub of Genista with dispersed woodland of oak (Q. ilex) while in thermophile areas is present broom.Olive and almond plantations are the agriculture of this region. Also there is shepherding in the plain areas or soft slopes.

Key Biodiversity The site holds important numbers of cliff-nesting bird species. The breeding population of Neophron percnopterus occurs in this area and it is one of the most important in Portugal.It is siginificative the number of Aquila chrysaetos, Hieraaetus fasciatus and too for Oenanthe leucura that occurs in arid areas of IBA.Also there are several passerines.

Populations of IBA trigger species

Species Season Period Population estimate Quality of estimate IBA Criteria IUCN Category
Black Stork Ciconia nigra breeding  2001  1 breeding pairs  good  C6  Least Concern 
Griffon Vulture Gyps fulvus resident  2001  15-20 breeding pairs  good  B2, C6  Least Concern 
Golden Eagle Aquila chrysaetos resident  2001  4 breeding pairs  good  C6  Least Concern 
Egyptian Vulture Neophron percnopterus breeding  2001  6-8 breeding pairs  good  B2, C6  Endangered 
Bonelli's Eagle Aquila fasciata resident  2001  2 breeding pairs  good  B2, C6  Least Concern 
Red Kite Milvus milvus resident  2001  1-5 breeding pairs  good  C6  Near Threatened 
Milvus migrans breeding  2001  10-20 breeding pairs  good  C6  Not Recognised 
Little Bustard Tetrax tetrax breeding  2002  5-10 breeding pairs  medium  C6  Near Threatened 
Burhinus oedicnemus breeding  2002  uncommon  C6  Not Recognised 
Eurasian Eagle-owl Bubo bubo resident  2001  5-10 breeding pairs  medium  C6  Least Concern 
Black Wheatear Oenanthe leucura resident  2001  frequent  B2, C6  Least Concern 
Blue Rock-thrush Monticola solitarius resident  2002  common  B2, C6  Least Concern 

IBA Monitoring

2005 low not assessed not assessed
Good - based on reliable and complete / representative data

Transportation and service corridors utility & service lines happening now small area/few individuals (<10%) very rapid to severe deterioration low


IUCN habitat Habitat detail Extent (% of site)
Shrubland Sclerophyllous scrub, garrigue and maquis  58%
Wetlands (inland) Rivers and streams  3%
Rocky areas Inland cliffs  9%
Artificial - terrestrial Arable land; Perennial crops, orchards and groves  30%

Land use

Land-use Extent (% of site)
agriculture -
hunting -
tourism/recreation -
water management -

Protection status National Special Protection Area Vale do Rio Côa,20628 ha overlaps with IBAArcheologic Park Vale do Côa InternationalIBA overlaps with Special Protection Area.

References SNPRCN (1992)Araujo,Neves & Rufino(1994)Monteiro(1995)Berliner(1996,2001)Instituto do Ambiente e Desenvolvimiento(1999)

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Recommended citation  BirdLife International (2016) Important Bird and Biodiversity Area factsheet: Côa valley. Downloaded from on 22/10/2016

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