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A NATURAL PARADISE IN THE CITY

Laguna Nimez Nature Reserve, with its almost 70ha, it preserves a bunch of representative environments, with a wide diversity of native flora and fauna species.
We invite you to explore its 5 natural environments, and learn a little more about nature in this part of the world.

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NATURAL ENVIRONMENTS

PATAGONIAN STEPPE

Within the LNNR, a portion of the "Patagonian Steppe" ecoregion is protected; represented mainly by bushes.

Some of the most common plant species that we can get to know are the Calafate bush (Berberis microphylla); the Neneo (Mulinum spinosum); and different species of the Senecio and Acaena genus.

Around its leaves, branches and/or roots, feeding on its flowers and fruits, a whole range of life develops from invertebrates (such as spiders; a native  bug related only to calafate bushes; bumblebees; and butterflies) to bigger animals, such as grey foxes (Lycalopex griseus) that build their burrows in bushes; rodents; Dwarf armadillos; and of course, the beautiful birds that captivate us all.

For further information:

* Book (in Spanish)  "Las leyes de la estepa"; Santiago De la Vega.

* Book 25 Plants of the Southern Patagonian Steppe"; Claudia Guerrido.

* "Tierras patagónicas". Web page with a great summary 

* UICN web page about the Patagonian Steppe

WETLAND

Within the Patagonian Steppe ecoregion, in the town of El Calafate, we can find a very rich environment due to the presence of a system of lagoons, streams and the Argentino lake: the Calafateño Wetland.
Within the reserve, it is mainly represented by the Nimez and Escondida lagoons. In this environment we can observe mainly acuatic birds, such as the attractive Chilean flamingo (Phoenicopterus chilensis); Black-necked swans (Cygnus melancoryphus) next to Coscorobas swans (Coscoroba coscoroba); ducks; and coots, among others.

GRASSLAND

Next to the lagoons, forming part of the Wetland; in this case with a predominant herbaceous vegetation, we find the Grassland enviorment.
This site is the habitat of native plant species such as the "coirones" (Festuca and Stipa geneus), the curious Azorella (that seems like a rock on the ground), and others, with beautiful flowers such as "Don Diego de la noche"(Oenothera odorata) and Topa Topa (Gn. Calceolaria).
From these tender pastures and invertebrates that live in the Grassland feed bird species such as the Unpland geese (Chloephaga picta), the Black faced ibis (Theristicus melanopis), Southern lapwings (Vanellus chilensis), and Magellanic snipes (Gallinago magellanica), among others.
It is also common to see among these pastures, the funny foxes, playing, and/or looking for rodents, lizards or eggs to feed.

REED AREA

The reeds are the environment with the smallest surface within the park, but one of the most important due to its functions.  This site, which, as the name implies, is mainly composed of reeds (family Juncaceae); it is the largest aquatic birds nesting site in the entire protected area, during the summer; and the only aquatic space that does not freeze (due to the presence of vegetation) during the winter season, making it a fundamental environment for the survival of the non-migratory aquatic species present in the RNLN.
Due to the presence of a large number of reproductive couples -with nests-, it is the place par excellence to observe birds of prey such as Chimangos caracara (Milvago chimango) and/or the strikings Cinereus harriers (Circus cinereus).
It is also the habitat of the special and elusive Gallineta chica (Rallus antarticus), a vulnerable bird worldwide, that lives in few places on the planet.

LAKE SHORE

The last environment is comprised of the Argentino lake coast. This area, with a predominance of dunes and rocky beaches, houses a native flora very similar to that of the Steppe. Not so its fauna. The cliffs are nesting areas for the agile swallows (family Hirundinidae), and among its coasts, with the naked eye, we can find many species of shorebirds, most of them migratory. Some examples are the Magellanic Plover (Pluvianellus socialis), which is near threatened (NT) worldwide, and with few specimens on the planet (with most of its individuals in Patagonia); the Roufus-chested Dotterel (Charadrius modestus); and the long-distance migrators Sandpipers (fam. Scolopacidae) that travel every year from pole to pole. These spend the southern summer on our coasts, to fly back to the northern summer in the North Hemisphere (USA, Canada, Greenland) where they nest.
The preservation of this environment, from the non-circulation of wheeled vehicles, extraction of dunes, or introduction of domestic animals; guarantees the life of these wonderful specimens, some of them, that perform the longest and most difficult migrations in the world.

To enjoy these environments in an appropriate way, we invite you to read

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