Holm Oak Savanna

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We found the best way to break into the protected oak savannas was at the ancient dolmen sites.  This site, Los Gabrieles Domenico is near Valverde del Camino still in Andulucia just south of Extremadura.  It is a wild expanse of Holm Oak savanna which at a distance looks just like Cork Oak savanna with the same character-full trees leaning out at all angles, but when you get closer you see the bark is more finely tesselated and you don’t get the harvested tree trunks.  You do get acorns though in huge profusion and these feed myriad wildlife and livestock on the bare earth below.  We did see a couple of Wild Boar a bit earlier (my first) and one dead one on the road.  Much more visible were the similar dark Iberian pigs which graze the acorns and give up the famous flavoured jamon that you see hanging from the ceilings in many hostels and homes.  The bare earth appears tilled in some way under the trees presumably to make harvesting the acorns easier and in some areas the land is also cultivated under the trees.  Here it was quite wild and natural and when we got to the dolmens we looked out over an enormous valley which must have been the range of the hunter-gatherers who lived here many thousands of years ago.  You could see the attraction of the place because they could see everything going on in the entire valley.



Additional information

Weight0.05 kg
Dimensions42 × 14.8 cm

Fine Art Print, Original Artwork

Rob Davies

Rob studied art at school to A level and has kept the interest in painting going alongside a career in biology and conservation.  Although he prefers to sketch and paint from life in the field, Rob has been commissioned to do exact bird illustrations for various publications including journals, a monograph on the Black Eagle and a field guide to African birds of prey.

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