Get to know the Species

Common Buzzard

Navigator Forests: maintaining and enhancing natural values

The forests managed by The Navigator Company total around 105,000 hectares in Portugal (a country where forest areas exceed 3 million hectares). In these forests, more than 240 species of fauna and 800 species and subspecies of flora have already been identified (end of 2021). Here, biodiversity management cuts across field operations to maintain and enhance their natural values.

  • The largest dragonfly in Portugal is the blue emperor (Anax Imperator) which can grow to about 8.5 cm in length and 10 cm in wingspan. In males, its blue colouring stands out, giving it its name, but in females, green is more predominant, as can be seen in this photo taken by João Ezequiel at Quinta de São Francisco.

  • Are you familiar with this effective insect deterrent from the animal kingdom? We are talking about the friendly common gecko (Tarentola mauritanica), which can be found all over Portugal. It differs from other species due to its dinosaur-like appearance, complete with scales and spines that resemble armour. Its feet stick to surfaces thanks to intermolecular forces (or Van der Waals forces).

  • The red-necked nightjar (Caprimulgus ruficollis) first starts arriving in Portugal in April and stays here until October. Despite being a nocturnal bird that can easily camouflage itself in nature, it has been sighted on Navigator properties in Malcata, Tejo Internacional, and Alentejo. The importance of conserving the habitats that support the natural cycles of these and many other ‘travellers’ is highlighted on the second Saturday in May – World Migratory Bird Day.

  • It is known as the black-eyed blue, a much easier “nickname” to remember compared to Glaucopsyche melanops (its scientific name). It is distinguished by its different shades of blue and it can be seen flitting about all over the country between March and July. This particular black-eyed blue was photographed on the Ferreiras estate, in Penamacor, by Nuno Rico, head of biodiversity conservation at The Navigator Company.

  • The common firecrest (Regulus ignicapillus) is a bird that lives at Quinta de São Francisco, near Aveiro, where it served as “model” for patient nature photographer Paulo Oliveira. The yellow stripe on the head indicates that it is a female. In males, the tone is orange. In both cases, these coloured feathers form a retractable crest which, when standing, resembles a crown.

  • The Great Tit (Parus major) is one of the birds that has been most reproduced in the nest boxes installed at Herdade de Espirra (Pegões). The chicks, a few days old, were captured by the lens of Nuno Rico, responsible for Navigator’s biodiversity area, who closely monitors their growth.