Portuguese American Journal

Corvo: Home to the most unique flower in the world – Azores

One of rarest flowers in the world, known as ‘Myosotis Azorica’, grows exclusively on the island of Corvo where it was found near extinction.

Endemic to the Azores, the plant was identified for the first time in 1842 by British botanist H.C. Watson, on the islands of S. Jorge, Pico, Faial, and Flores. Since 2012 the Myosotis Azorica was believed to be extinct in the archipelago.

In 2014, a patch of about 50 plants was identified on Corvo island by researchers from the Portuguese Society for the Study of Birds (SPEA) [Sociedade Portuguesa para o Estudo das Aves] and researchers from the University Technical University.

Known locally as ‘Não-me-esqueças’ [Forget-me-not], the Myosotis Azorica is still extremely vulnerable to extinction due to its rarity and the presence of goats and sheep in its habitat.

SPEA, in collaboration with Corvo’s Natural Park and the Munich Technical University, are joining efforts to determine how to protect this most unique species. They hope to be able to increase the number of existing plants through nursery propagation.

Corvo (population 468) is the smallest and the northernmost island of the Azores archipelago. The island (5 km diameter/17.1 km2 area) emerged around 730,000 years ago of volcanic origin. The island is listed as a World Biosphere Reserve by UNESCO.

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The Azores (population 250,000) is a region of Portugal composed of nine islands. The archipelago discovered by Portuguese explorers in the 15th century, became an Autonomous Region of Portugal in 1976. The government of the Autonomous Region of the Azores includes the Legislative Assembly, composed of 57 elected deputies, elected by universal suffrage for a four-year term; the Regional Government and Presidency, with parliamentary legitimacy, composed of a President, a Vice-President and seven Regional Secretaries responsible for the Regional Government executive operations. The Autonomous Region of the Azores is represented in the Council of Ministers of the Central Government by a representative appointed by the President of Portugal. According to the latest US census over 1.3 million individuals of Portuguese descent live in the United States, the majority with roots in the Azores. It is estimated that over 20,000 US citizens live in Portugal.