Photographer's Note

Berlengas -biosphere reserve.
If you look a map of Portugal about midpoint off the country’s coast just north of Lisbon are a group of islands in the Atlantic about ten kilometers from the coastal town of Peniche. Known as the Berlenga Islands in English they are better known as the Ilha de Berlenga in Portuguese. The main island is part of a larger archipelago of mostly uninhabited islands. Far better known among Portugal’s islands are the Azores and Madeira which are more populated, celebrated, farther out in the Atlantic, and more heavily visited with regular commercial air service. Ilha Berlenga, the largest of the Berlengas archipelago, is less than one mile (1.5 kilometers) long, less than a half mile (800 meters) across, and an extension of Cape Carvoeiro. Until recently the islands’ small population mainly survived on fishing the rich waters in the surrounding Atlantic which include mackerel, mullet, and swordfish. The islands are now recognized as a UNESCO World Biosphere Reserve. Bird colonies are numerous, especially nesting gulls, puffins, and cormorants, so take precautions. If you hike the island stay on the marked path as 23,500 acres are protected habitat.

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