ANIMALS COOPERATING IN THE NATURAL SYSTEM
The domesticated animals we cooperate with in Montado do Freixo do Meio are essential elements, not only ensuring the workings of the natural system but also for its regeneration. The practice of holistic husbandry at Freixo do Meio, which aims to renew the pastures and regenerate the soils, making the land productive again, attracted the attention of its creator, Allan Savory, who visited in 2019. They are, therefore, the most emblematic and ancestral breeds from the Iberian Peninsula, being the closes to the wild ancestor that originated them. This allows them to, in large measure, retain the capacity to play vital roles in the ecosystem.
In parallel, we do an active work of genetic conservation, by managing assets and cooperating with the official genealogical records of the breeds, as well as contributing to the preservation of the collective gastronomical cultural heritage. We raise «Barrosã» cows in a herd of 160 heads; Alentejo hogs in a permanent “vara”, or team, of 450 allies; with the black merino sheep in a flock of 250 recyclers: finally, a brood of black Lusitanian hens with 40 regulators.
The animals at Montado do Freixo do Meio are cared for by a permanent team formed by Maria Pereira da Silva, Alexandre Balancho and a seasonal intern.