Masquefa (ACN).- The Amphibians and Reptiles Recovery Centre of Catalonia (CRARC) has set a total of 7,915 reptiles and amphibians free over the past 13 years. Many of them have participated in specific reintroduction projects, such as the conservation of the Mediterranean tortoise, with 5105 reintroduced specimens in the Nature Reserve of Garraf and Montsant (near Barcelona), or the reintroduction project of the European pond tortoise in Estany d’Ivars i Vila Sana (in Lleida) as well. Regarding the typology of released reptiles and amphibians, most of them are tortoises, with 6,283 released; followed by toads and frogs, with 846 released specimens, 486 snakes, 270 lizards, and 48 salamanders and newts.
Since 1999, the CRARC, based in Masquefa (47 kilometres West from Barcelona), has released 7,915 reptiles and amphibians from different nature reserves within Catalonia. Besides the reintroduction of the Mediterranean and the European pond tortoise, the CRARC has also undertaken projects as the release of green snakes and salamanders in several natural spaces, like the Montserrat Nature Reserve or the Foix Park (Barcelona).
1020 stream tortoises have been released in to the watershed of some Catalan rivers. According to the CRARC, nowadays the most released species are the Mediterranean, the stream and the spur-thighed tortoise, the green snake and the salamander.
These initiatives are supported by the General Direction for the Natural Environment and Biodiversity of the Catalan Government the Barcelona Provincial Council’s Nature Reserve Area, the Masquefa Town Council and conservation organisations and associations.