The Ecosystems of Maspalomas

By and large, two main ecosystems can be defined in the Maspalomas Dune field and the Maspalomas Pond.

The dune field:

Today, the Maspalomas dune field is the only ecosystem of this type found in Gran Canaria. Within the field there are distinct environments differing mainly in sand mobility and vegetation.

The mobile dunes form a strip between Playa del Inglés, where they originate and the Maspalomas Pond. They are characterized by large masses of sand in constant movement due to the wind. Chains of transverse dunes that are interspersed with inter-dune depressions make up the mobile dunes.

The Pond of Maspalomas

Is a small coastal saltwater lagoon. It is the remains of the former salt marshes of Maspalomas destroyed by the housing projects built around it.

It is separated from the sea by a sand barrier that is broken when there is abundant rain. This allows water renewal and entry to fish and other marine life.

One of the main features of this ecosystem is its seasonal character, great variations in the water’s salinity, volume and the visiting bird community.

Around the pond are patches of aquatic vegetation such as reed fields and small woods of Canary Islands Tamarisk (Tamarix Canariensis), indispensable for the birds and invertebrates. They constitute an excellent refuge for the birds, both migratory and nesting.

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