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Riserva Naturale dei Ghirardi
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Riserva Naturale dei Ghirardi

Ghirardi Nature Reserve, established in December 2010 with the PDF act of the Regional Council, includes the south-western section of the Province of Parma, between the municipalities of Albareto and Borgo Val di Taro. With an altitude ranging between 478 and 693 m above sea level, it has a surface of about 370 hectares and it is situated within the wider WWF Oasis of the same name.  

The idea of safeguarding this area dates back to the 1950s thanks to the Marchini-Camia family, especially to Senator Francesco. The project went on thanks to his sons and has lasted until today, so that the area was protected from the changes that overwhelmed the mountain traditional landscape. The above mentioned family asked for the Oasis to be established in 1980 and wanted the agreement with the WWF Italia in 1996, in order to make the area be listed in the association's protected areas system.

Since 2010 the Reserve has been managed by the Province of Parma, in agreement with the WWF; since September 2013 the Region entrusted the new Managing Authority for the Parks and Biodiversity of Western Emilia with the management of this area, keeping the agreement with WWF.

Within the Reserve there is a great part of the Site of Community Importance IT4020026 - "Boschi dei Ghirardi". The series of Protected Areas (Reserve, Oasis, SCI) includes several examples of the apennine middle mountain: coppice forests, high trees, fields, meadows, shrublands, streams and small marshes. An ecological diversity characterized by a higher concentration of animal and plant species than in the surrounding areas, making the Ghirardi Nature Reserve the ideal place where scientific research and environmental didactics are combined. 
Ghirardi Reserve: Bertoloni's bee orchid
(foto di Guido Sardella)
Ghirardi Nature Reserve
(foto di Guido Sardella)