Uses and Resources
In the early days, the impact of man on El Torcal would be minimal, since we speak of scarce presence and small groups, whose livelihood was mainly based on hunting and gathering, later evolving towards grazing and cultivation, easier activities to perform in the plains around El Torcal in the same place. There is evidence of the exploitation of the quarries since Roman times, which continued until the last century as we have already mentioned.
With the industrial revolution, El Torcal suffers one of the most dramatic changes, the charcoal of holm oaks makes disappear the arboreal layer of the place, the exploitation of the quarries intensifies and the grazing becomes massive, drastically changing the original landscape of El Torcal.
The acquisition of the land of El Torcal by the Junta de Andalucía, has allowed to start a restoration of this unique enclave or at least the paralysis of some of the activities that had more impact on the landscape as the quarries of Sierra Pelada , which ceased their activity in the mid 70’s.
The number of head of cattle was also reduced, minimizing the impact of this on the land. The goat grazing was eliminated, much more aggressive with the vegetation than the bovine and the bovine. Currently only extensive grazing is allowed, being reduced to cattle and bovine cattle.
Agriculture is maintained with arable crops such as alfalfa, cereals, beans … in favorable areas both from Northwest Torcal (Navazo, Navacillo) and from South del Torcal (sale of Rosario and marginal lands next to the road .
Another of the uses that El Torcal currently has and that started Telefónica in 1964, was the platform for telecommunications systems, installing the first antenna in Sierra Pelada. This company was followed by others, of a state and military nature that were gradually installing their antennas, repeaters …
But undoubtedly the most important public use of El Torcal is tourism and education. The concern of citizens for the natural environment, the uniqueness of the place, the proximity to the Costa del Sol as well as its geographical situation in Andalusia, make this space one of the most visited in the community. In El Torcal, numerous environmental education campaigns are carried out by the Ministry of the Environment and other administrations and private entities linked to tourism and education. There are different types of campaigns, aimed at educational centers, groups and families and individuals, as well as their orientation, geological, plant and animal …