River Po: from the mouth of Adda river to Ostiglia

Site description (2000 baseline):

Site location and context
A stretch of the River Po, including large islands of shingle and sand, riparian woodlands, poplar Populus plantations and flat, cultivated areas. The area includes a lowland freshwater wetland (169 ha) located a few kilometres north of the River Po, called Palude di Ostiglia. This marshland of reed Phragmites and sedge Carex is separated from the surrounding intensively cultivated countryside by a 2 m high dyke. Main land-uses are intensive agriculture (especially maize), forestry (poplar), and recreational activities. In Palude di Ostiglia the main land-use is the sustainable exploitation of sedge for producing traditional handcrafts.

Key biodiversity
This site is important for three large heronries (Pomponesco, Gramignazzo and Bellaguarda), and especially for Nycticorax nycticorax. The area also supports notable numbers of a wide variety of other wetland species. Species of global conservation concern that do not meet IBA criteria: Aythya nyroca (max. 1, passage), Acrocephalus paludicola (max. 1, passage).

Pressure/threats to key biodiversity
The main threats are posed by the drainage, dredging, canalization and filling-in of wetlands. Building of civil infrastructure and periodic large floods also have a large negative impact on the area. Palude di Ostiglia is a LIPU Reserve, and the area has been proposed as a Natural Park. Istituto Nazionale Fauna Selvatica carries out bird-ringing regularly at Ostiglia in spring and autumn.

Protected areas
National Partial International Low23 ha of IBA covered by Regional Nature Reserve (Garzaia di Pomponesco, 23 ha). 123 ha of IBA covered by Regional Nature Reserve (Paludi di Ostiglia, 123 ha). IBA also covered by four Regional Nature Reserves of unknown area (Bosco Ronchetti, Lanca di Gerole, Lancone di Gussola, Spiaggioni di Spinadesco). 1,889 ha of IBA covered by Special Protection Area (Valli del Mincio, Paludi di Ostiglia, Torbiere d'Iseo, 1,889 ha). 123 ha of IBA covered by Ramsar Site (Palude di Ostiglia, 123 ha).

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2023) Important Bird Area factsheet: River Po: from the mouth of Adda river to Ostiglia. Downloaded from on 24/09/2023.