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Ruta Enoturística de la Comarca en El Puerto de Santa María

La Juncosa (reedy) Lagoon

A small paradise for aquatic birds

The clay soil, typical of the vineyards in the region, facilitates the appearance of ponds and small seasonal lagoons that provide jewels of this type.

It is the smallest of the three lagoons in the Endorheic Complex of El Puerto de Santa María. It is highly appreciated by ornithologists and especially by waterfowl lovers due to its proximity to the route of the path, which is why it is also the most exposed.

Endorheic* = Of a basin or lake: having no outflow to an external body of water such as a river or ocean, and only losing water through evaporation or seepage into the ground.

This lagoon, together with the “Laguna Chica” (Small Lagoon) and the “Laguna Salada” (Saltwater Lagoon), belongs to the Endorheic* Complex of El Puerto de Santa María, part of the Natura 2000 Network and classified as a Special Area of Conservation (SAC), Special Protection Area for Birds (SPA) and Site of Community Interest (SCI). For those reasons, access to all of them is prohibited.

Of the three, it is the one with the highest degree of clogging caused by the waste material from agricultural operations that are collected by the streams that feed it. However, its shallow depth allows waders to feed in its mudflats and ducks can easily access the bottom plants to feed.

It is shallow and remains dry most of the year, although in the rainiest years it has kept water until almost the end of the summer. It has algae of the Characeae family as well as aquatic plants such as Ranunculus peltatus, whose flowers dye the lagoon white, together with other purely aquatic species such as Callitriche truncata

Other plants and shrubs such as Tamarix canariensis, Scirpus lacustris, and Juncus maritimus cling to the edges of the lagoon and are a meeting and nesting point for aquatic birds, some of which are in danger of extinction, such as the horned coot.

The most commonly found are flamingos, various species of ducks, herons, coots, lapwings, western swamphens and the common moorhen.

In addition to this fauna, amphibians and insects make up a biotope that is as special as it is sensitive to both natural and human-induced changes. A visit at dusk will allow you to enjoy the sound of frogs and birds returning to their resting places.

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