Peat (Peat bog complex)

Castro Laboreiro, Melgaço

Peat, in the broadest sense of the term, are peat-bog complexes or that is, a set of habitats with abundant water where peat accumulates. This particular peat zone is located in a relatively flat and area with ridges where springs rise or where some water courses run, conditions that favour the accumulation of water.

In the less saturated areas where there is no accumulation of peat, humid scrub is present, considered a priority habitat for nature conservation and biodiversity. This type of habitat is often surrounded by meadows (cervunais), usually grazed, which can lead to the destruction of the humid scrubland by fire and overgrazing.

The peat bogs in Portugal are threatened mainly because of water drainage or pumping and can only survive whilst there is an excess of water in the area. If that ceases to exist most of the species specific to peat bogs disappear.

They form part of an important ecosystem, wherein can be identified various species of fauna specific to the habitat, especially amphibians such as the lusitanian salamander, the Bullnose Frog, the Iberian frog, rela and natterjack toad.



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