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LIFE Pterodromas4future

For nearly 40 years the petrels of the Madeira Archipelago have been the target of conservation efforts, however the threats to the continuity of the species are constant, mainly associated with human presence. The Petrels population is still in the verge of extinction! The implementation of new conservation measures and more efficient and effective methodologies is extremely necessary!

The project LIFE Pterodromas4future (LIFE20 NAT/PT/001277) is 70% co-financed by the LIFE Nature Programme of the European Commission for a total amount of 1 838 151.00€.

It runs from 1 October 2021 until 30 September 2026 and is coordinated by the Institute of Forests and Nature Conservation, IP-RAM (IFCN, IP-RAM).

The project will contribute to the implementation of the EU Biodiversity Strategy until 2030, Habitats Directive, Birds Directive, Climate Change Adaptation Strategy and EU Regulation No. 1143/2014 on the prevention and management of the introduction and spread of invasive alien species. It is also in line with the United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity.




To improve and guarantee the conservation status of the Madeira Petrel (Pterodroma madeira) and the Desertas Petrel (Pterodorma deserta), endemic seabirds of the Madeira Archipelago, in their nesting areas (intervention areas).




The improvement of the Petrel’s nesting habitat conditions, the increase of knowledge about its biology and ecology, and the minimization of the impact of its threats, using new technologies to modernize the conservation actions of these species.


The project aims specifically to:

- increase the resilience of the Petrel’s nesting habitat to climate change

- reduce adult and juvenile mortality during the breeding season



- Modernisation of the monitoring of the Petrels with new, non-invasive technologies, minimising the impact on habitats and birds.

- Increasing and updating knowledge about the species, namely nesting areas, size and population trends.

- Placing artificial nests in the two intervention areas.

- Creation of a firebreak barrier around the Madeira Petrel nesting areas, with the eradication and control of invasive plants.

- Modernisation of predator control and monitoring in the intervention areas.

- Minimising light pollution in the flight corridors between the sea and the nesting areas.

- Regulating nature activities in the Madeira Petrel nesting areas.

- Increased awareness and knowledge of the general public, schools, mountaineers and tourists, about the Petrels and its threats.



Madeira Petrel (Pterodroma madeira) breeding area

Eastern Mountainous Massif in Madeira Island, classified as:


-Madeira Natural Park (Geological and High Altitude Vegetation Reserve) since 1982

-Natura 2000 Network (Special Protection Area - SPA and Special Area of Conservation - SAC) since 2009

-Important Bird and Biodiversity Area (IBA) at least since 2000

-Natural Monument of the Central Mountainous Massif since 2021

Desertas Petrel (Pterodroma deserta) breeding area

Bugio in the Desertas Islands, classified as:

-Biogenetic Reserve by the Council of Europe since 1992

-Desertas Islands Nature Reserve since 1995

-Council of Europe European Diploma for Protected Areas since 2014

-Natura 2000 Network (Special Protection Area - SPA and Special Area of Conservation - SAC) since 2009

-Important Bird and Biodiversity Area (IBA) at least since 2000

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Coordinator Beneficiary

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Associate Beneficiaries

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The Institute of Forests and Nature Conservation, IP-RAM is a public entity with its own autonomy, under the supervision of the Regional Secretariat for the Environment, Natural Resources and Climate Change. Its mission is to promote nature conservation, the planning and sustainable management of bio and geodiversity, the landscape and the forest, as well as the resources associated with it, as well as the management of protected areas. The IFCN, IP-RAM has extensive experience in the implementation of conservation projects under the LIFE European Union programme. At LIFE Pterodromas4future, as coordinator, he has functions in project management and in the execution of actions with birds, predators, invasive plants, logistics, contingency plan, recreational and sports activities, environmental awareness and education, among others. .

SPEA is an Environmental Non-Governmental Organization whose mission is to work for the study and conservation of birds and their habitats. Since 1999, SPEA is BirdLife International's partner in Portugal. SPEA has extensive experience in implementing conservation projects under the LIFE European Union programme. At LIFE Pterodromas4future, as a partner, it will be responsible for actions to combat the problem of light pollution (PL), with regard to mapping the PL, stakeholder involvement, mitigation of PL in the passageways of the Madeiran nun, and awareness for the threat of the PL.

The XIS Group based in Madeira, since 1998 has skills in information systems engineering, development of web applications and apps; cybersecurity; artificial intelligence; Big Data & Analytics; and computing clouds. It provides IT tools, consultancy services, training and support in this area. At LIFE Pterodromas4future, as a partner, it will be responsible for developing software with a specific recognition algorithm to detect vertebrates (such as mice, cats, birds) in infrared photos taken by automatic cameras in the field.  This software will identify the animals and organize them into groups for further processing.

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