Aracena y Picos de Aroche

Aracena y Picos de Aroche
Aracena y Picos de Aroche

zone_04The Aracena y Picos de Aroche Natural Park (Interactive Map and Official Website) lies at the western end of the Sierra Morena mountain range in the Huelva Province close to the border with Portugal. On its eastern border it adjoins the Sierra Norte de Savilla Natural Park (16) in the Seville Province which in turn borders the Sierra de Hornachuelos Natural Park (15) in Cordoba Province.

The humid climate of the park is influenced by the Atlantic Ocean as its situated closer to this coast than the Mediterranean. Oak and Chestnut trees with meadow pastures are grazed by fighting bulls and Cerdo Iberico, a breed of black pig from Iberia. The pigs feed on acorns giving the jamon iberico ham a distinct flavour. Two reservoirs, the Embalse de Zufre and Embalse de Aracena, are sited within the park.

Trees include Holm, Gall, Cork and Pyrenean Oaks, Chestnut, Poplar, Willow, Alder, Ash, Stone Pine, Black Pine and Eucalyptus. Scrubland and shrubs include Wild Gig and Sarsaparillas.

Province: Huevla
Status: Natural Park – 1989
Size: 187,500 hectares

Birds of prey include Golden, Spanish Imperial and Booted Eagles, Griffon, Egyptian and Black Vultures, Lesser Kestrels, Goshawks, Ospreys, Black-winged, Black and Red Kites. Other birdlife includes the Black Stork, White Stork, Marsh Hen, Montagu’s Harrier, Crane, Little Bustard, Great Spotted Cuckoo, Red-necked Nightjar, Hoopoes, Azure-winged Magpies, Bee-eaters, Golden Orioles, Southern Grey and Woodchat Shrikes.

Mammals include Wild Boar, Fox, Badgers, Genet, Wild Cat, Mongoose, Stone Martin, Polecat, Weasel, Red Deer, Otter and Iberian Lynx. The Bear and Wolf disappeared some time ago.