Archipel et dunes d'Essawira

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Archipel et dunes d'Essawira

  • Country: 
  • Site number: 
  • Area: 
    4,000 ha
  • Designation date: 
  • Coordinates: 
    31°30'N 09°48'W
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Archipel et dunes d'Essawira. 15/01/05; Essawira; 4,000 ha; 31°30'N 009°48'W. Site of Biological and Ecological Interest, Permanent Biological Reserve, Hunting Reserve. A coastal site composed of sand dunes, the biggest archipelago on Morocco's Atlantic coast, sandy beaches and rocky outcrops. It hosts a number of Macaronesian endemic species, such as the plants Chenolea tomentosa, Polycarpaea nivea and Helianthemum canariense, as well as other rare North African species, including seven endemic reptiles and amphibians. The archipelago constitutes an important stop for migratory species and a nesting site for Eleonora's Falcon, which is represented by 3.5% to 10% of its world population. Thanks to the upwelling, artisanal and professional fishing are very productive activities along the coast. Tourism is also developing, posing potential threats to the site in the future, in addition to poaching and over-fishing. The archipelago is also of archaeological importance due to the presence of Greek, Phoenician and Roman remnants, as well as more recent Portuguese bastions dating to the 17th and 18th centuries. A management plan is currently being developed, together with the set-up of an Environmental Education Centre to act as a biodiversity observatory. Ramsar site no. 1469. Most recent RIS information: 2005.

Administrative region: 

  • National legal designation: 
    • Hunting Reserve
    • Permanent Biological Reserve
    • Site of Biological and Ecological Interest
  • Last publication date: 


Ramsar Information Sheet (RIS)

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