Birdwatching: Lagoas de Santo André e da Sancha

Alentejo: Santiago do Cacém and Sines (Beja)
Geographical coordinates: 38º04’N 08º49’W
Area: 2,672 ha
Altitudes: 0-48 m

The site extends along a coastal region and includes two coastal lakes - Lagoa Santo André and Lagoa da Sancha - and a system of small, freshwater lakes formed in dune depressions. Lagoa de Santo André and Lagoa da Sancha lakes are representative examples of Mediterranean-style coastal lakes, one of the most vulnerable types in wetlands. Lagoa de Santo. The lake vegetation includes extensive patches of reeds and rushes.

The Birds
Lagoa de Santo André is one of the most important domestic wetlands for birds, especially the occurrence of the Red-crested Pochard, this being the most important breeding ground in the country for this species. The area also has great value for the passage of trans-Saharan migratory perching birds, ciconiiformes and waders. In Lagoa da Sancha Lake, the existence of a relatively large colony of Purple herons is a highlight.

Black-winged Stilt (Himantopus himantopus); Eurasian Coot (Fulica atra); Little Bittern (Ixobrychus minutus); Little Tern (Sterna albifrons); Marsh Harrier (Circus aeruginosus); Purple Heron (Ardea purpúrea); Purple Swamphen (Porphyrio porphyrio); Red-crested Pochard (Netta rufina).

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