GNF - La Nava

La Nava – Spain


Background La Nava

The lagoon La Nava is located in northwest Spain on the Tierra de Campos Plateau near Palencia. It is fed by two rivers: the Valdejinate and Retortillo.

Politicians had a dream of a blooming landscape producing a rich harvest. In the 1950s, the construction of 15 large and many small canals and ditches nearly drained Lake La Nava, and the expected super harvests did not come.


Creation of the La Nava nature reserve

In 1990, our partner organisation Fundación Global Nature España brought Lake La Nava back to life. At present, it covers about 300 hectares.

La Nava has become again an internationally important nature reserve and resting place for migratory birds.


Bird species 

225 species of birds were counted – among them 50 % of the species living in Spain, and more than 60 % of the birds registered in the Red List. Among them are greylag geese (Anser anser), teal (Anas crecca) and shoveler (Anas clypeata), kibitzers (Vanellus vanellus), stilts (Himantopus himantopus), redshanks (Tringa totanus) and coots (Fulica atra). The extensive grain fields around the lagoon are home to a variety of steppe birds such as Great Bustard (Otis tarda), Calandra Lark (Melanocorypha calandra) or Harriers (Circus spp.).


Project measures La Nava

Since October 2006, the partner organisation Fundación Global Nature (FGN) has implemented the LIFE Nature project “Wetland Restoration and Management: Canal of Castile SPA” at the Canal de Castilla. The project is running until September 2010. Its  primary objective is the development of a plan for the management, monitoring and restoration of the wetlands along  the canal.

The Canal de Castilla with a total length of 207 km was built at the end of the 18th and the beginning of the 19th century and is considered an engineering  masterpiece. Beside its use for the corn transport, the canal water should power crop mills as well as assure the water supply in Castile. Today, the channel is an important natural region.On its shorelines, common reed and bulrush are found, the gallery forests behind are covered with elms, poplars and white poplars, ash trees, osiers, hazels and honeysuckles. The eco-system provides habitat to marsh harriers, egrets, swans and other birds.


Further information about the LIFE Nature Project “Wetland Restoration and Management: Canal of Castile SPA” in English is e available



Partner Organisation La Nava

Fundación Global Nature España

Mr. Antonio Guillem Avivar

Corro del Postigo, 1

34337 Fuentes de Nava, Palencia, Spain

Phone: +34 979 84 23 98

Fax: +34 979 84 23 99




Fundación Global Nature España (Headquarters)

Ms. Amanda del Rio

C/ Tajo, 2

28231 Las Rozas (Madrid), Spain

Phone: +34 91 71 04 455

Fax: +34 91 556 98 95

 Logo Fundación Global Nature España


More information about La Nava

Detailed Data

Further information about the EU-LIFE Project "Living Lakes: Sustainable Management of Wetlands and Shallow Lakes" (2002 - 2004) and free downloads are avaiable under a separate project page on our website.


Two awards for the Fundación Global Nature

 Award “Best of the Best LIFE Projects in Europe”

On May 25th, the Project “Canal de Castilla”, designed and managed by Fundación Global Nature Spain, received the prestigious award “Best of the Best LIFE Projects in Europe”. The project “Canal de Castilla” was finished in 2010 and aimed at recovering and preserving more than 30 small wetlands that surround this important water canal built in the 18th century. Most of these wetlands are declared Nature 2000 site but in spite of that proper protection is still lacking. The restoration program is a part of a holistic wetlands conservation action plan that Fundación Global Nature is implementing in the North of Spain (Castile). The LIFE Program is the most important European financial instrument and provides funding to hundreds of nature conservation activities throughout the whole European Union. The award ceremony will take place in the European Parliament and will decorate the 20 best LIFE projects developed in Europe over the last two decades.


Earlier in May 2011, the Fundación Global Nature already received the MAPFRE Foundation Environment Prize for its achievements in the field of nature protection. This award was donated by the Queen of Spain. And next week, the Fundación Global Nature will receive another award from the Spanish Minister of Environment for its comprehensive wetland conservation programme in Spain. The Living Lakes family is very proud of these important and valuable recognitions.

 Canal de Castilla
 Canal de Castilla
 The MAPFRE Foundation Environment Prize was donated by Sofia, Queen of Spain,