Type of protected area - Where it is located
Typology: Oriented Regional Nature Reserve established with D.A.R.T.A. July 4, 1984 n. 215
The Regional Natural Reserve of the Stagnone Islands of Marsala protects an area of about 2,012 hectares, with a marine lagoon, islands and coastal salt pans still partially active; it is located in the Municipality of Marsala (TP). The reserve is made up of the four islands (zone A) and the coastal strip which includes the Genna salt pan, the Ettore salt pan, the Infersa salt pan and the S. Teodoro salt pan (zone B).
Island of San Pantaleo (Mozia) - Reserve of the Stagnone Islands of Marsala (photo www.myhouseservice.it)
Lo Stagnone di Marsala is a vast lagoon area between the city of Marsala and the Birgi Peninsula. In the lagoon area two basins are distinguishable, a southern one more open towards the sea and a northern one with more marked lagoon characteristics. The average depth is about one meter, with a maximum of three meters in the southern part and a minimum of 20 - 30 centimeters in the northern part. The water exchange takes place through two mouths: one south bounded by Punta dAlga and Punta dello Stagnone (1,400 m) and one north between Torre S. Teodoro and Punta di Tramontana (450 m). Part of this wetland had already been transformed into saline by the Phoenicians. Idrisi, a well-known Arab traveler, reports the first evidence dating back to the Norman period. In 1572 the port of Trapani was the most important for the export of salt, required throughout Europe. The waters of the salt ponds follow the cycle of the seasons, tinged with a thousand colors, while the sky is filled with the flight of migratory and nesting birds. The mills have been recently restored and brought back to the ancient spenders. The Island of San Pantaleo preserves the remains of Mozia, a Phoenician city founded in the late eighth century BC. On the island there is also a small but rich museum dedicated to Joseph Whitaker, an illustrious figure of entrepreneur and scholar of the early twentieth century, who carried out numerous archaeological excavations. Inside the museum you can also admire the splendid statue of a young man dating from the fifth century BC, an exceptional example of Greek art.
The Mediterranean scrub of spectacular beauty fills every corner of the reserve with its scents, along with the halophilous vegetation. The posidonia meadows host an infinite variety of animal species beneath the surface of the water.
Marsala stagnone (photo Pierluigi http://picasaweb.google.com/lanvez)
Information for the visit
Regional Province of Trapani
Via XXX January