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Type of protected area - Where it is located
Typology: Regional Oriented Natural Reserve; established with D.C.R. of February 6, 1985 n. 1913.
Provinces: Como, Sondrio
The Pian di Spagna - Lago di Mezzola Regional Nature Reserve mainly consists of a large flooding of Lake Mezzola. It affects an area of 1,586.4 hectares in the municipalities of Dubino, Gera Lario, Novate Mezzola, Sorico and Verveia.
Wetland of international importance (Ramsar).
View of the Pian di Spagna from Forte Montecchio - Lake Mezzola (photo Flavio Capra)
In Roman times, Lake Como went north to the Chiavenna plain. It was the floods of the Adda that cut the head of the lake, creating the vast swamp of Pian di Spagna, which separates Lake Mezzola from Lake Como. Today, due to its location close to the Rhaetian ridges, it is one of the most important wetlands in the entire Alpine arc. The reserve includes the lake of mezzola and the neighboring Pian di Spagna area. It consists of three areas: cultivated areas, an open body of water and a strip of wetland. The largest and most important reed bed occupies the northern belt of the Pian di Spagna. The dominant plant by far is the swamp straw, sometimes accompanied by the less common cheerlead. In the Borgofrancone channel there are the rare and graceful water lilies and the nannuferi. In the best preserved areas, such as the southern shore of Lake Mezzola, behind the reed beds are the cariceti.
The waters of the lake are frequented by grebes and a few dozen mute swans. In the reeds, more closed and sheltered environments, marsh passerines live, such as the cannaiola and the cannareccione, but the little bittern also nests there. Among migratory and sedentary birds belonging to 200 different species have been observed.
Information for the visit
Pian di Spagna Nature Reserve Consortium - Lake Mezzola
Via Della Torre 1 / A
22010 Sorico (CO)
Tel. 0344 84251