Italy designates its 51st Ramsar site

Italy designates its 51st Ramsar site

2 December 2008
Italy

The government of Italy has named “Lagustelli di Percile” (256 hectares, 42°06’N 012°55’E) as its next Wetland of International Importance. As summarized by Ramsar’s Monica Zavagli, this Natura 2000 SPA and Regional Natural Park in the hills of the province of Roma consists of two closed Apennine lakes, “Marraone” (the smaller with only 40 m diameter) and the wider “Marrone” also called “Fraturno” (118 m diam, depth 14 m), and their surroundings. The two basins constitute one of the most interesting areas of karstic origin of central Italy and their circular morphology witness their origin as dolines. The main habitats are large reed beds, built up by Phragmites australis associated with Scirpus spp. and Alisma plantago-aquatica, riparian vegetation with Salix spp., Populus spp., typical aquatic vegetation river-side, such as Potamogeton spp. and Myriophyllum sp., and important population of orchids growing on the calcareous grasslands around the lakes. The site also supports several species protected at European level such as:Salamandra terdigidata, Triturus carnifex, Bombina variegate, Euplagia quadripunctata, Euphydryas (aurinia) provincialis and Lanius collurio. Cow grazing and tourism are the main threats in the area. [16/10/08]