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News release from SPEA/Honeyguide Wildlife Holidays 24 November 2015

British support for campaign against illegal bird trapping

This web page has the text of news release to English media in Algarve, following Honeyguide's visit in October/November 2015. It was also released to Portuguese media by SPEA.

A conservation campaign against the illegal trapping of wild birds has been given a boost by a British wildlife holiday group.

A group from Honeyguide Wildlife Holidays has donated 1000 euros to the campaign run by SPEA, Sociedade Portuguesa para o Estudo das Aves (BirdLife in Portugal).

SPEA's campaign aims to draw attention to an increasing problem of the illegal trapping wild birds, sometimes then sold for food.

According to SPEA, bird-trapping is not a new problem but seems to be on the increase, perhaps linked to increasing unemployment and attempts to exploit wildlife to find new sources of income.

SPEA wants to change mind sets and to stress that catching wild birds is illegal. It also wants to make sure the law is applied in a more effective way.

Robin in snare trap
Robin in snare trap, Lagos (SPEA)

The birdwatching and wildlife group from Honeyguide Wildlife Holidays, which is based in Norwich, England, made the donation while on a recent visit to Algarve and Alentejo.

Honeyguide proprietor Chris Durdin explained how all Honeyguide holidays include a conservation donation as part of the price of the holiday.

“We like to contribute to the protection of the wildlife that we come to Portugal to enjoy, and we are very pleased to have a long-running partnership with SPEA in Portugal,” he said.

Domingos Leitão from SPEA said: This donation will be used to produce leaflets to distribute in local schools, clubs and events. We are making people aware that catching small birds is wrong and illegal and they should call the authorities any time they see it.”

This donation brings the total given to SPEA since the first Honeyguide holiday in mainland Portugal in 2005 to £4,974. The total for conservation contributions from all Honeyguide holidays passed £100,000 during 2015 and now stands at £103,528.

Sardinian warbler with snare trap
Sardinian warbler with snare trap (SPEA)

Honeyguide's Algarve & Alentejo holiday . . . . . . . . . Honeyguide and SPEA


New release dated 24 November 2015 here as a PDF.

cheque handover

Honeyguide Wildlife Holidays leader Rob Macklin (left) with Domingos Leitão, both Honeyguide leader and SPEA officer, accepting the Honeyguide Wildlife Charitable Trust cheque for €1000 (£763). Photo by Sue Lewis-Jones.

Honeyguide Wildlife Holidays group, at Castro Marim

Honeyguide Wildlife Holidays group, at Castro Marim (Domingos Leitão).

This story online:

In English: Algarve Daily News, Portugal Resident (they've fallen into the usual trap of thinking all birdwatchers are 'twitchers'), Anglia info and SPEA's website.

In Portuguese: A voz de Algarve, Ambiente Magazine, Barlavento. Local PT, Algarlife, Ambiente Magazine, Sulinformação,

SPEA's Facebook and via SPEA's Twitter and SPEA's e-newsletter (PDF here).

More information (as given in news release)

On SPEA’s campaign against the illegal trapping of wild birds here.

About Honeyguide Wildlife Holidays: www.honeyguide.co.uk.

Honeyguide’s annual holiday in mainland Portugal moves between Algarve & Alentejo, based in Alte and Vila do Bispo, and in Central Portugal, based near Santarem and Marvão. For next year, in May 2016, Douro Internacional and Montesinho Natural Parks in Northeast Portugal is their latest destination.

Honeyguide Wildlife Holidays is exceptional among wildlife holiday companies as it has a Charitable Trust through which its donations to conservation projects are passed to local conservation organisations.

News coverage from Honeyguide's donation in 2009 in the Algarve Resident here (in English). This is a pdf (which chops off some of the photo) and the story is still online now as Portugal Resident. A similar story from 2006 was in the Algarve newspaper Barlavento.

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