An itinerary in the green areas of the provinces of Ferrara and Ravenna to discover nature reserves, valleys, oases, and pine forests that make up environments of extraordinary charm and fascination.
Our itinerary starts off from Bosco Mesola, where we find a splendid wooded reserve which, with an area of 1,058 hectares, represents one of the last and best-preserved remains of lowland woods, a remnant of the ancient forests that were found up to a few centuries ago along the Adriatic coast. Presumably originating in the Middle Ages, Bosco della Mesola is today the largest wooded area in the Ferrara area and can easily be visited on one’s own, on foot, or by bicycle, following the authorized routes that allow you to spot deer and fallow deer.
The Reserve, in fact, is home to the native deer of the dunes, the only descendant of the Red Deer that originally populated the Po Valley. The birdlife is also very rich, with important representatives of the Great Tit, the Blackcap, the Nightingale, the Red Woodpecker and the Green Woodpecker, the Hoopoe as well as some nocturnal birds of prey.
The itinerary continues on towards Comacchio, the "capital" of the Po Delta Park, entering the heart of its valleys, 5 km away from the historic town center. A magical kingdom that rises up between land and water, for long centuries a place of vital importance to the economy of the territory and today an extraordinary natural site, the ideal habitat for hundreds of bird species including pink flamingos, which for years have had a permanent colony inside the Salina.
In spring, the Spoonbill, the Stilt-bird, the Oystercatcher, the Avocet, the Kentish plover and various species of seagulls come there to nest. In winter, in addition to the numerous species of Shorebirds, it is also possible to observe some Nordic species such as the Goldeneye, the Red-breasted merganser or the Short-eared Owl.
On the second day, we move to the province of Ravenna to discover a real unicum of the territory and ecosystem of greatest importance for the conservation of the Po Delta Park: it is Punte Alberete, an oasis of great landscape fascination for the alternation of environments of hygrophilous woods, submerged meadows, with flora and fauna typical of marshy environments of various depths of water.
Other elements that render the landscape unique are the fallen trees that make up a habitat for protected species and on which aquatic birds sit to hunt or rest. Here, in fact, it is even possible to come into close contact and to observe species that elsewhere are very rare: the Kingfisher, the Pygmy cormorant, the red-crested pochard, in addition to the Glossy ibis, the symbol of the Oasis.
In addition to the avifauna, the presence of numerous reptiles, including the rare paludal land tortoise and the Aesculapian snake, should also be noted.
The last stop brings us straight to the second station of the Po Delta Park in the territory of Ravenna, which has its cornerstone in the mouth of the Bevano stream, the only natural mouth of the Adriatic Sea left intact.
Within this area we can find the splendid Pineta di Classe, which together with that of Cervia represents a relic of the oldest pine forest in Ravenna, and five kilometers of unspoiled beaches and dunes, in which the Little Tern, the Kentish plover and the Oystercatcher nest.
Inside this Pineta are centuries-old plants and Mediterranean vegetation that alternate with arid meadows and flooded hollows with brackish or fresh water. From the point of view of fauna, this area is the habitat for several birds such as the nightingale, the red-breasted robin, the nuthatch, and the tawny owl, as well as a fairly large presence of amphibians and reptiles.