My volunteering trip to help bring a fire-ravaged Portuguese forest back to life

Five years after wildfires tore through its woods, an inland area between Porto and Lisbon is still working to restore its ecosystems – and is open to offers of help from visitorsThe gently sloping valley floor beneath the village of Ferraria de São João is so green and lush that you could imagine insects having to queue to take their turn in its Arcadian abundance. Birds sing, bees buzz, and meadow grasses shoot up towards an azure sky.It wasn’t always so. Antonio Zuzarte recalls how, five years ago, a raging wildfire reduced the landscape to a scorched, blackened wasteland. Everything was burnt to a crisp, he says – trees, crops, animal life. Continue reading...

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