Mondego Estuary

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Mondego Estuary

  • Country: 
  • Site number: 
  • Area: 
    1,518 ha
  • Designation date: 
  • Coordinates: 
    40°07'N 08°49'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.


Mondego Estuary. 02/12/05; Região Centro; 1,518 ha; 40°08'N 008°50'W; National Ecological Reserve, Important Bird Area. Comprises the estuary of the Mondego River as it passes around the Murraceira island, including intertidal areas, salt marshes, salt pans, reedbeds, rice fields and fish farms. This site is one of the main stopover and refuge areas for migrating birds along the northwestern coast of Portugal and is particularly important for waders, especially Recurvirostra avosetta and Phoenicopterus ruber. During the breeding season the site is regionally important for species such as Black-winged Stilt Himantopus himantopus and Little Tern Sterna albifrons. Aquaculture and fishing are the chief economic activities, which is focused on three migratory species of high economic value, the Sea lamprey, Allis shad, and Twaite shad. Traditional salt production has been decreasing or been transformed for aquaculture, which has led to a loss of suitable habitats for waders and other waterbirds. Potential threats come from increasing eutrophication due to intensive use of fertilisers and herbicides and the subsequent occurrence of macro-algae blooms. The neighbouring expanding harbour and the adjacent industrial region put further pressure on the site. Ramsar site no. 1617. Most recent RIS information: 2006.

Administrative region: 
Região Centro

  • National legal designation: 
    • National Ecological Reserve
  • Last publication date: 


Ramsar Information Sheet (RIS)