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Location Spain, Cataluña
Central coordinates 3o 7.00' East  42o 12.00' North
IBA criteria A4i, A4iii, B1i, B2, C2, C3, C4, C6
Area 5,454 ha
Altitude 0 - 45m
Year of IBA assessment 2000


Site description A coastal wetland complex with saltmarshes, coastal lagoons and freshwater ponds, humid grasslands and riverine forest. The area is used for sheep-grazing and rice cultivation.

Populations of IBA trigger species

Species Season Period Population estimate Quality of estimate IBA Criteria IUCN Category
Mallard Anas platyrhynchos winter  1994  18,000 individuals  good  B1i, C3  Least Concern 
Ixobrychus minutus breeding  1993  35-40 breeding pairs  good  C6  Not Recognised 
Cattle Egret Bubulcus ibis non-breeding  1994  5,800 individuals  good  A4i, B1i, C3  Least Concern 
Eurasian Bittern Botaurus stellaris resident  1996  5-6 breeding pairs  good  C6  Least Concern 
Purple Heron Ardea purpurea breeding  1996  49 breeding pairs  good  C2, C6  Least Concern 
Western Marsh-harrier Circus aeruginosus resident  1995  14 breeding pairs  good  C6  Least Concern 
Purple Swamphen Porphyrio porphyrio resident  1996  35 breeding pairs  medium  B2, C2, C6  Least Concern 
Himantopus himantopus breeding  1993  109-117 breeding pairs  good  C6  Not Recognised 
Larus michahellis winter  1997  5,000 individuals  good  A4i, B1i, C3  Not Recognised 
Whiskered Tern Chlidonias hybrida passage  1996  250 individuals  good  B1i, C2  Least Concern 
Lesser Grey Shrike Lanius minor breeding  1997  12-20 breeding pairs  good  C6  Least Concern 
Moustached Warbler Acrocephalus melanopogon resident  1997  common  C6  Least Concern 
A4iii Species group - waterbirds winter  20,000-49,999 individuals  unknown  A4iii, C4   

Protected areas

Protected area Designation Area (ha) Relationship with IBA Overlap with IBA (ha)  
Aiguamolls de l'Alt Empordà - ES0000019 Birds Directive 10,831 protected area overlaps with site 4,783  
Aiguamolls de l'Empordà Integral Nature Reserve 850 protected area contained by site 867  
Aiguamolls de l'Empordà Nature Park 4,824 protected area contained by site 4,784  
Aiguamolls de l'Empordà Wetlands of International Importance (Ramsar) 4,784 protected area contained by site 4,784  
Riu Fluvià - ES5120021 Habitats Directive 1,324 protected area is adjacent to site 0  


IUCN habitat Habitat detail Extent (% of site)
Forest Alluvial and very wet forest  30%
Grassland Humid grasslands; Mesophile grasslands  35%
Wetlands (inland) Rivers and streams; Standing brackish and salt water; Standing freshwater; Water fringe vegetation  -
Artificial - terrestrial Arable land; Highly improved re-seeded landscapes  70%
Coastline Lagoons; Mud flats & sand flats; Sand dunes & beaches  -

Land use

Land-use Extent (% of site)
nature conservation and research 90%
tourism/recreation 20%
agriculture 60%
forestry -

Protection status National High International High4,784 ha of IBA covered by Natural Park (Aiguamolls de l'Emporda, 4,784 ha). 867 ha of IBA covered by Integral Nature Reserve (Aiguamolls de l'Emporda, 867 ha). 4,803 ha of IBA covered by Ramsar Site (Aiguamolls de l'Empordà, 4,803 ha). 867 ha of IBA covered by Special Protection Area (Aiguamolls de l'Empordà, 867 ha).

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Recommended citation  BirdLife International (2014) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Ampurdán marshes. Downloaded from on 23/10/2014

To provide new information to update this factsheet or to correct any errors, please email BirdLife