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Location Spain, País Valenciano
Central coordinates 0o 40.00' West  38o 3.00' North
IBA criteria A1, A4i, B1i, B2, C1, C2, C3, C6
Area 3,755 ha
Altitude 0 - 10m
Year of IBA assessment 2000


Site description Two coastal lagoons which have been transformed for salt extraction. There is a narrow belt of reed (Phragmites) and halophytic vegetation.

Populations of IBA trigger species

Species Season Period Population estimate Quality of estimate IBA Criteria IUCN Category
Black-necked Grebe Podiceps nigricollis winter  1997  844-2,100 individuals  good  A4i, B1i, C3  Least Concern 
Himantopus himantopus breeding  1995  40-140 breeding pairs  good  B1i, C2  Not Recognised 
Pied Avocet Recurvirostra avosetta breeding  1995  78-83 breeding pairs  good  C6  Least Concern 
Charadrius alexandrinus resident  1995  210-222 breeding pairs  good  B1i, B2, C3  Not Recognised 
Audouin's Gull Larus audouinii winter  1997  482-1,900 individuals  good  A1, A4i, B1i, C1, C2  Near Threatened 
Little Tern Sternula albifrons breeding  1995  211-223 breeding pairs  good  B1i, B2, C2, C6  Least Concern 
Whiskered Tern Chlidonias hybrida breeding  1991  57-78 breeding pairs  good  B2, C6  Least Concern 

Protected areas

Protected area Designation Area (ha) Relationship with IBA Overlap with IBA (ha)  
Lagunas de la Mata y Torrevieja Nature Park 3,700 protected area contained by site 3,755  
Lagunas de la Mata y Torrevieja Wetlands of International Importance (Ramsar) 3,693 protected area contained by site 3,700  
Llacunes de la Mata i Torrevieja. - ES0000059 Birds Directive 3,709 protected area contained by site 3,709  


IUCN habitat Habitat detail Extent (% of site)
Shrubland Scrub  10%
Wetlands (inland) Standing brackish and salt water; Water fringe vegetation  90%

Land use

Land-use Extent (% of site)
urban/industrial/transport 40%
water management 20%
not utilised -

Protection status National High International High3,755 ha of IBA covered by Natural Park (Lagunas de la Mata y Torrevieja, 3,755 ha). 3,700 ha of IBA covered by Ramsar Site (Lagunas de la Mata y Torrevieja, 3,700 ha). 2,100 ha of IBA covered by Special Protection Area (Salinas de la Mata y Torrevieja, 2,100 ha).

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Recommended citation  BirdLife International (2014) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Mata and Torrevieja lagoons. Downloaded from on 30/10/2014

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