The last wild river in Europe: the Tagliamento river
Located along the left bank of the Tagliamento river, the Marina Azzurra Resort is part of a unique natural context in Italy.
The Tagliamento is the last Alpine river in Europe that maintains the natural dynamics and morphological complexity that have characterized many of the Alpine rivers, before the hydraulic interventions carried out by man in the 19th and 20th centuries.
The reasons why the Tagliamento river is considered a natural asset of inestimable international value lie in the fact that the river not only constitutes a reference ecosystem for the Alps, but is also a model river ecosystem for its natural dynamics, not compromised by human interventions.
An ecological corridor of great interest
The Tagliamento river originates at the Mauria pass (1,195 m asl) and freely crosses four typologically different areas: the mountainous area of the Carnic and Julian Alps, the pre-Alpine area, the high and low Friuli plains and finally the coastal area flowing into the Gulf of Venice between Lignano Sabbiadoro and Bibione.
Therefore, given its function as a link between the Mediterranean and Alpine environments, through an environmental gradient that from north to south involves climatic changes due to the variation of rainfall and temperature, its course is characterized by a variety of environments, still present in the upper and middle sections of the river.
This river represents a sort of bridge between the Alps and the Adriatic.
The morphology with intertwined channels ensures that there are various microhabitats with different relationships between running waters and the terrestrial environment which thus influence each other.
The uniqueness of the Tagliamento river derives from the presence of some fundamental elements:
1. A very important naturalistic corridor that guarantees environmental continuity between the plain and the mountains;
2. A very wide alluvial plain where the main hydrogeological, morphological and ecological processes characteristic of a river ecosystem are still unaltered;
3. A high wealth of species and habitats;
4. Some of the most threatened environmental types in Europe: gravel bars, vegetated islands and riparian forests.
They have a fundamental importance for the biodiversity of the area: the river distributes sediments and plant fragments of various sizes according to the strength of the current and builds the vegetated islands, thus creating the conditions to support the great variety of animal and plant species that distinguishes it from all other Alpine rivers. In the middle course of the Tagliamento, typically alpine species coexist with characteristic species of the pre-alpine and lowland belts.
Source: Un futuro per il Tagliamento – Riserva della biosfera unesco, WWF – LAND