Wild Spain - Land of Traditional Transhumance
Year: 2019
Run-Time: 1 x 52 min.

Directed by Heribert Schöller

Available worldwide

Languages: German (ORIGINAL) , English (DUBBED)
Format: 16:9

Wild Spain - Land of Traditional Transhumance

Schafe, Rinder und Cañadas - Die großen Tierwanderungen Spaniens

The  migrational  sheep  farming  called  transhumance  is  a  very  old  tradition.  In  early  summer  by  time vast landscapes of Central- and South Spain are begun desiccating, also the cattle are driven hund-reds of kilometers into the mountains with a higher precipitation. Until the 20th century the transhu-mance  in  Spain  mobilized  over  four  billion  sheep,  goats  and  cattle.  A  dramatic  change  occurred  in the  1960s  with  the  EG-Agricultural  politic.The  transhumance  was  threatened  to  disappear  entirely. And with it sub-natural cultural landscapes, traditional economic systems, as well as a huge amount of  wildlife  and  plants.  The  consequences  to  landscape  and  nature  were  dramatically.  Vulture,  wolf and bear and many other carrion recycler didn't find enough food. Since the 1990s conservationists and  herdsman  associations  fight  for  the  preservation  of  the  transhumance.  Eventually  the  state  and society  recognized  the  cultural  and  conservational  importance  of  the  transhumance  to  the  country and Europe. A lot of old trails were revived, the whilom Cañadas Reales, the royal trails, were adjus-ted under protection by law. A blessing for nature: today thousands of vultures are hauling their cir-cles  across  the  plateaus  and  through  the  mountains  of  Spain.  Still,  like  almost  all  of  the  traditional agricultural  systems  all  around  the  world,  the  transhumance  is  struggling  for  survival.  Nevertheless the state isn't hopeless, because not only shepherds and herdsmen have rediscover this old tradition, also the nature related tourism is getting more and more interested in the transhumance. The reason: here you find peace, a simple life and a lot of nature in the heart of Spain, in the old Spain, in the real Spain.The  film  as  a  documentation  with  elements  of  reportage  takes  place  at  the  Cañadas,  the  traditional trails of he herds. It narrates of the life of sheep and cattle, of the herdsmen and stock-breeders and of the landscape and the nature through which their journey goes. A herd makes round about 20 ki-lometers a day, cattle with calves often just 15. Therefore the distance of 300 to 400 kilometers from the  winter  to  the  summer  meadows  becomes  to  an  energy-sapping,  extending  over  several  weeks lasting  march.  Thereby  the  herds  range  impressive  landscapes  from  Andalusia  up  to  the  Cuenca mountains, from the Extremadura to the point of the Sierra de Gredos, one of the most monumental mountains of Spain. The journey is pebbly and full of deprivation, but also affected by unique experi-ences. In the midst of an extraordinary nature, which could be found more and more rarely in Europe. Eventually, the herdsman, sheep and the cattle and last but not least the faithful shepherd dogs com-passed their destination: the green summer meadows in the mountains. Already expected from their families, up here the traditional herdsman feasts are celebrated. Back home again. And the animals - they range through an emerging boundless freedom of this mountain area for the next few months.
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