Embouchure de la Moulouya

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Embouchure de la Moulouya

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  • Area: 
    3,000 ha
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  • Coordinates: 
    35°04'N 02°22'W
Materials presented on this website, particularly maps and territorial information, are as-is and as-available based on available data and do not imply the expression of any opinion whatsoever on the part of the Secretariat of the Ramsar Convention concerning the legal status of any country, territory, city or area, or of its authorities, or concerning the delimitation of its frontiers or boundaries.


Embouchure de la Moulouya. 15/01/05; Berkane; 3,000 ha; 35°04'N 002°23'W. The most significant estuary and floodplain complex of Maghreb's biggest Mediterranean river, this site comprises five systems: marine, estuarine, lacustrine, riverine and palustrine, in addition to the coastal dunes. It is a compulsory stop, given the surroundings' aridity, for European migrants that find refuge in the Tamarix vegetation system. These include Moussier's Redstart (Phoenicurus moussieri), the Marbled Teal (Marmaronetta angustirostris), and Audouin's Gull (Larus audouinii). Some endemic and rare fish can also be found in the wetlands, which are utilized as spawning and growing grounds during migrations. The site is also important in its storage of floodwaters, which contribute to lowering the groundwater's salinity levels. This area has a high aesthetic value and ecotourism potential. An area of the estuary is dedicated to the culture of juvenile eels, while there are abandoned agricultural fields and pastoral activities taking place in some parts of the estuary. The main threats include wetland habitat loss (by sand and gravel quarries, which have destroyed riverbanks and the Tamarix habitat); transformation of natural habitats into aquaculture ponds; modifications of the hydrological balance and water quality due to agriculture, aquaculture, solid waste and decrease in flood flows; loss of biodiversity and aesthetic value. Ramsar site no. 1478. Most recent RIS information: 2005.

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