La Mancha Húmeda Biosphere Reserve
Reserva de la Biosfera La Mancha Húmeda
- Biosphere Reserve certification
In the heart of Castilla-La Mancha
Since 1980, Tablas de Daimiel National Park, Lagunas de Ruidera Nature Park and the transitional area between the two protected spaces are a Biosphere Reserve. More than 25,000 hectares of continental wetland make up the area known as the "Wet Patch".
This Biosphere Reserve is in the heart of Castilla-La Mancha and is formed by two protected spaces: Tablas de Daimiel and Lagunas de Ruidera. In addition, both parks are listed as Special Bird Protection Areas (ZEPA) and Wetlands of International Importance under the Ramsar Agreement. In Tablas de Daimiel, between the Guadiana and Cigüela rivers, are flooded areas that constitute the perfect habitat for a lot of water birds. Some of its islands are worthy of note (like Pan, Algeciras and Amos), surrounded by lake and water vegetation (reed, rush and bulrush). The only trees in the area are the tamarisks. Horned grebes, ducks, herons and kestrels, to name but a few of the many bird species found at the park, share the space with weasels, otters and numerous amphibians. Lagunas de Ruidera, on the other hand, is located in the Upper Guadiana river valley. The park comprises a group of natural dams distributed in an area of 25 kilometres, with interesting flora and a great number of bird species, especially anatidae. These bodies of water are interconnected through waterfalls and underground fissures, creating a beautiful scenery. In the surrounding area are holm oak and juniper, but as the soil becomes more humid, elm and poplar trees appear. Around the lakes are reed, rush, bulrush and sedge. Different species of anatidae, such as teals and ducks, and of rallidae such as coots, constitute the main bird colonies in the wetlands, whilst the Mediterranean forest is the habitat of rabbits, turtle doves, partridges and foxes. Barbels are the most numerous fish found in this area.
Ciudad Real (Castile-La Mancha)
- Type of area
- Biosphere reserve
- 25000 hectares
Access and surroundings
Around these parts of Castilla-La Mancha, we also find interesting towns with traditional houses. Almagro, Valdepeñas, Villanueva de los Infantes, Ossa de Montiel and Alcázar de San Juan are some of these places that visitors should not miss.
Mancha Húmeda (Wet Patch) is the most significant continental wetland in the peninsula and it houses a diverse avian fauna, both sedentary and stationary.
Information for visits
Tablas de Daimiel National Park. From Ciudad Real, take the N-420 road and from Manzanares, take the N-430 road to reach Daimiel. Eleven kilometres outside of Daimiel, along a tarmac road, we reach the Tablas de Daimiel Information Centre. Approaching Lagunas de Ruidera. From Ciudad Real: take the N-IV road to Manzanares and continue on N-430, passing Membrilla, La Solana, Alambra and Ruidera. From Albacete: take the N-430 road, passing Barrax, Munera, Sotuélamos, Ossa de Montiel and Ruidera.