State Natural Reserve of Animal Population Campotosto Lake - Abruzzo

State Natural Reserve of Animal Population Campotosto Lake - Abruzzo

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Type of protected area - Where it is located

Typology: State Natural Reserve of Animal Population; established with Ministerial Decree March 15, 1984; falls within the Gran Sasso-Monti della Laga National Park.
Region: Abruzzo
Province: LAquila

The State Natural Reserve of Animal Population of Campotosto Lake covers an area of ​​1,600 hectares around the lake of the same name; it is located in the municipalities of Campotosto, Capitignano and LAquila.

State Natural Reserve of Animal Population Lake Campotosto (photo


Located in the Upper Aterno Valley, in the splendid landscape of the Gran Sasso and Monti della Laga National Park, Campotosto Lake is the largest basin in Abruzzo and one of the largest artificial lakes in Europe. Created in the 1940s by flooding a vast swampy area for the purpose of powering the turbines of a hydroelectric plant, the lake, which covers an average of 1,400 hectares, has been protected since 1984 by a State Nature Reserve which also includes 200 hectares of banks. The Campotosto Lake Nature Reserve is a refuge for numerous species of birds and fish, some of which were threatened with extinction. From a wildlife point of view, the most conspicuous presences are those of birds, among which stands the gray lairone, which arrives in Campotosto in the autumn to start again in the spring; but on the shores of the lake there are also waders such as the whisk, the snipe and the croccolone, taken as a symbol of the protected area. The surface of the reservoir is very popular with wild ducks: here are the largest colonies of pochards and whistles in Abruzzo, along with marzaiole and teals. Among the nesting species there are mallards, coots and moorhen. Finally, Campotosto lake is one of the hundred Italian dacua mirrors that host the great crested grebe, an ichthyophagous species characterized by a complex and curious courtship ritual. The flora around the lake, of the hygrophilous type, is made up primarily of bistorta, falasco and willow; the areas where the marshy environment prevails are populated by cattails and marsh reed; in the drier ones the birch groves alternate with shrub areas with juniper, hawthorn, laburnum, gorse. In the colder areas the beech forest is inhabited by foxes, hares, pheasants and partridges. In winter the surface of the lake, often completely frozen, offers a majestic and unusual sight: the views towards the Gran Sasso, Terminillo and Laga are truly fascinating. But it is above all in summer that Campotosto becomes a tourist destination and a reference point for the practice of outdoor sports. Numerous hiking itineraries leave from here, both on foot and on horseback or by mountain bike, in the direction of the reliefs that surround the basin, while the circumlacual road is an excellent starting point for pleasant and relaxing bike rides (in winter it hosts a skiing course basically).

Information for the visit

Former state company for state forests
Piazza S. Marciano, 3
67100 LAquila

Video: Italy Scanno. XTERRA Adventures (August 2022).