Samborombon Bay Conservation Unit






Americas flyway


WLI Americas


Name of organisation

Dirección de Áreas Naturales Protegidas (DANP)-Organismo Provincial for Sustainable Development (OPDS)

Funding support

From the administration

Number of staff

7 distributed in northern (1), central (3) and southern (3) areas

Number of visitors per year

Not measured.

Overall aims of the centre

"Wetland of International Importance" declared according to the Ramsar Convention due to its outstanding ecological values, especially its importance for waterfowl and migratory birds.

Description of the centre

Location: Province of Buenos Aires, Departments of Magdalena, Chascomús, Castelli, Tordillo, General Lavalle and Municipality of La Costa, Province of Buenos Aires, Argentina.

Main Characteristics:

The area comprises a coastline of approximately 180 km, the land strip has a variable width of between 2 to 23 km, including, in addition a portion of shallow waters up to the average 3 m isobath.

It is an extensive intertidal zone, corresponding to the estuary of the Río de La Plata, characterised by marshes, brackish marshes and crab flats.

From a geomorphological point of view, it forms the eastern limit of a region of approximately 58,000 km² known as the "Pampa deprimida" or "Depresión del Salado", with two main sub-areas: the "conchilla" coastal cords, of marine origin, and the "subrecent and current" coast, as an alluvial plain of the Río de La Plata, whose characteristic forms are the "cangrejales".

The water table is almost at the surface, directly affected by the fluctuations in the level of the estuary and subject to tides, floods and storms.

The influence of the tides brings in brackish water and the rivers, canals and streams bring in fresh water, thus creating a complex hydrological system with a wide variety of wetlands subject to pulsations depending on the interaction of the above factors.

The soils are poorly drained, with slow permeability, high salinity and alkalinity and little or no agricultural, livestock or forestry use, except in the "Conchilla" ranges, where greater permeability is observed with low salinity and alkalinity levels.

The climate is temperate-humid, with prevailing easterly winds. The predominant vegetation is herbaceous in nature, with the exception of the communities that settle on the Conchillas ridges.

The most important communities are: Wet Meadows, dominated by Cyperus sp. and Juncus sp. species; Salt Meadows, dominated by Distichlis spicata and Hordeum stenostachys; Hunquillar, formed by clumps of Juncus acutus; Espartillar, in two variants, dominated in both cases by Spartina sp. The following species dominate: Duraznillar, dominated by Solanum malacoxilom; Wet meadows with temporary or permanent ponds, with three variants depending on the dominance of Juncal, Totoral or Espadañal; Talar, a tree community growing on the Conchilla ridges, dominated by Celtis tala; Cortaderal, with associations in which the most conspicuous species are Cortadera selloana and Eryngium pandafolium.

As far as the fish fauna is concerned, it represents a spawning area for a commercially relevant ichthyofauna, being the Corvina.

Rubia, Micropogonias furnieri, the species that deserves the most attention because it is under the greatest harvesting pressure.

One of the species of greatest conservation importance is the Pampas deer, Ozotocerus bezoarticus. Dune lizard, franciscanas, sea turtles.

Among the most important reasons for the inclusion of Bahía Samborombón in the List of Wetlands of International Importance is its value as a habitat for migratory birds. According to Morrison and Ross (1989), the values of the censuses carried out in the area represent between 63% and 75% of the birds that stay in the austral summer in Argentina.

The most important species are:

Calidris fuscicollis, Limosa haemastica, Calidris canutus and Pluvialis dominica, Calidris subruficolis. Although the species distribution does not seem to be homogeneous throughout the bay, the number of Plovers and Sandpipers using Samborombón has been estimated at more than 100,000.

Two species of "Burritos", Lateralus spilocterus and Coturnicops nutata, listed by the IUCN as threatened, are found in the grassland areas.

Provincial Designations:

Reserva Natural Integral Bahía Samborombón, Provincial; Red Hemisférica de Aves Playeras (RHAP) Site; Reserva Natural de Objetivos Definidos Bahía Samborombón, Provincial; Reserva Natural Integral Rincón de Ajo, Provincial; Reserva Natural de Objetivos Definidos Rincón de Ajó, Provincial; Refugio de Vida Silvestre, Provincial; Monumento Natural Venado de las Pampas, Provincial; Monumento Natural Lagartija de las Dunas, Provincial; Monumento Natural Delfín Franciscana, Provincial; Sectores de alto valor de conservación de talares (talares del este, Ley de Bosques).

Other designations:

AVP Site (Wildlife Foundation)
AICA Site (Aves Argentinas)

Work Areas
Main CEPA work area
Part of our management plans and educational programmes with talks, workshops, graphic communication and social networks. Festivals and events. With educational institutions and the community.

Top three successes
Research: "Migratory Bird Health Monitoring and Surveillance Programme. Punta Rasa-Bahía Samborombón-Bs. - Argentina"/ "Analysis of migration patterns of the Buff-breasted Sandpiper (Calidris subruficollis) in Buenos Aires Province" (Us fish and wildlife service-OPDS)

Educational: "Welcome to the migratory birds of Samborombon Bay" festival and "Celebrating our wetland Bahía Samborombon" festival.

Top three challenges
Operational: Regulation of human activities and placement of infrastructure, signage and delimitation of vehicular traffic in the southern area of Samborombon Bay (Punta Rasa).

Pintando el mirador de aves con Escuela de Bellas Artes de San Clemente del Tuyu 1


Interpretation techniques

Creating signage; site information; Producing written materials; Using audio-visual tools; Developing nature trails

Visitor centres

Managing / creating habitat; Running a visitor centre; Building / maintaining structures


Engaging hard-to-reach groups; Engaging young people; Engaging the local community; Working with volunteers

Education and communication

Delivering adult education; Working with primary schools; Lobbying / running campaigns; Working with secondary schools


Auditing / assessing effectiveness; PR and marketing; Running effective administration; Health and safety; Project planning.

Contact details

Samborombón Bay Conservation Unit
tel +54 02245-492020


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