Po Basin mixed forests
Po Basin mixed forests is an ecoregion and biome composed of trees and other vegetation characteristically found in the temperate broadleaf and mixed forests surrounding the Po River in Northern Italy and Southern Ticino in Switzerland, and its watershed from the Cisalpine, or Italian side, of the Alps.
The Po Basin mixed forests consists of remnants of:
1. Mixed deciduous oak/hornbeam forest -
The freshwater ecosystems (zona umida) have a high level of biodiversity.
Threatened (in Italy) plant species include
- Leucojum aestivum
- Halocnemum strobilaceum
- Nymphaea alba
- Bassia hirsuta
- Limonium bellidifolium
- Utricularia australis
- Thelypteris palustris
- Salvinia natans
- Sagittaria sagittifolia
- Plantago cornuti
Lesser-disturbed wetlands which are important breeding areas for many bird species are most significant biodiversity of the ecoregion. Examples are grey heron, purple heron, great egret, little egret, squacco heron, cattle egret, great bittern, little bittern, pygmy cormorant and ferruginous duck.
The region is industrialised and has a long history of human pressure (shrinkage of wetlands, invasive species, and unsustainable hunting of waterfowl).
- "Po Basin mixed forests". Terrestrial Ecoregions. World Wildlife Fund.